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NRL CEO Dave Smith has congratulated Andrew Demetriou on a long and successful career as head of the AFL.

Mr Smith said he admired Mr Demetriou for devoting so much of his life to the game.

“Mr Demetriou has spent half his life in AFL, including 11 years as leader,” Mr Smith said.

“It is a credit to him that he has remained in such a demanding role for so long.

“Andrew has obviously overseen many changes and improvements to the game over the years and we wish him well in his future endeavours.”