Brayden Maynard's sweet moment with girlfriend as Collingwood star reveals horrible personal news

The Magpies player's jubilation was tinged with sadness after his 200th AFL game.

Brayden Maynard was spotted in a sweet moment with girlfriend Ashlee on Sunday as victory in his 200th AFL game came with a tinge of sadness at the loss of one of his close friends last week. The Pies pulled off their second-biggest comeback in club history to move into the top four, coming back from 54 points down to beat North Melbourne 18.11 (119) to 19.4 (118).

The incredible victory was extra special in that it came in Maynard's 200th career game. A divisive figure amongst rival AFL clubs, Maynard showed his softer side after the game when he embraced his girlfriend in a huge hug while celebrating.

Brayden Maynard and girlfriend Ashlee after Collingwood's win over North Melbourne.
Brayden Maynard revealed some horrible personal news amid a sweet moment with girlfriend Ashlee. Image: Getty/Channel 7

Ashlee posted the clip on social media, writing: "There’s no other journey I would rather be in the passenger seat for. 200 games, next to you, proud of you."

However's Maynard's jubilation came with some mixed emotions after he revealed in a post-game interview that he'd recently lost one of his good mates. “I absolutely love this club, I love these boys,” he said as he choked back tears.

“I’m getting a little bit emotional because it’s been a big couple of weeks for me. I’ve had a good mate of mine pass away to mental health issues.

“So, Deb, Amy and Bomber, if you’re watching this, my heart goes out to you and all your family. Much love from the Collingwood family and the whole AFL community, we’re sending you all our love, endless amount of hugs every day.

“It’s more than a game, it’s more than just 200 games for the black and white. I do this for my family, my friends, and the whole Collingwood supporter base, and these boys here and the coaching staff. Really emotional and I just want to get in there now and celebrate with the boys.”

Collingwood coach Craig Mcrae had revealed after last week's win over Melbourne that Maynard was doing it tough. The tragic death of his friend came in the same week that Maynard was preparing to take on the Demons for the first time since his controversial hit on Angus Brayshaw last year - which ultimately ended the Melbourne player's career.

“He’s had a lot going on this week - I won’t share the details of it - but off the field it’s been really hard for him,” McRae said last Monday. “So, I’m sure he wanted to put on a good performance for the stuff that’s happened outside of here.

“He’s a proud man and he played exceptionally well. We love him. It’s unfortunate what’s happened in his private life, but I will leave it at that.”

Brayden Maynard, pictured here after Collingwood's win in his 300th AFL game.
Brayden Maynard celebrates with teammates after Collingwood's win in his 300th AFL game. Image: Getty

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The Magpies trailed by 31 points at the final change on Sunday, but kicked six goals to one in a thrilling last quarter featuring three lead changes. Norm Smith medallist Bobby Hill took a courageous mark and kicked a go-ahead major at the 27-minute mark - his third of the final term and fifth overall.

But the contest wasn't settled until Zac Fisher's last-gasp snap floated agonisingly wide for North Melbourne. Fisher's kick drifted narrowly to the right with just three seconds left to play in one of the best games of the season so far.

The result lifted the Magpies (8-4-2) into third spot ahead of their mid-season bye, while North Melbourne (1-12) remain anchored to the foot of the ladder. "That really was a struggle," McRae said. "There's so many layers to it, with North Melbourne's incredible want and desire and youthful enthusiasm. They played right to the level of a team that's not down the bottom."

with AAP