Tom Wilkinson has stepped away from football to pursue other interests.

The small forward played his last game in the VFL on Saturday, in Geelong.

“Tom has certainly shown an incredible amount of persistence and patience, having to bide his time before getting an opportunity on an AFL list,” North GM football Cameron Joyce said.

“He leaves knowing that he achieved his goal to be drafted and knows he left no stone unturned in his pursuit of an AFL career.”

Overlooked in four consecutive drafts beginning in 2014, Wilkinson was thrown a lifeline by North when he was picked up with pick 41 in the 2018 Rookie Draft.

Upon his arrival at Arden St, Wilkinson literally hit the ground running and finished second in the 2km time trial. 

Just days later, he blitzed the field to win the gruelling Yo-Yo Test ahead of Jy Simpkin.

The mature-aged recruit battled ankle problems through out the season, only managing eight VFL games.

“We certainly wish him all the best for whatever comes next,” Joyce added.