Fights with teammates are proving extremely popular this year for footballers striving to win the biggest prizes in Australian sport, The Frownlow Medal and The Frownlow Medal Hall of Fame.
The Frownlow Medal is awarded to the player whose off-field demeanour epitomises the values of the modern-day footballer and draws attention to the status of footballers as role models to young Australians. It covers Australia’s four major football codes; the National Rugby League (NRL), Australian Football League (AFL), the A-League (Football) and Rugby Union’s Super Rugby competition. Kiwi international Shaun Kenny-Dowall won the inaugural medal in 2015 before Corey Norman in 2016 and Tim Simona in 2017.
The Frownlow Medal Hall of Fame honours former players and players who received media attention in previous seasons, for similarly scandalous behaviour, and its inductees include Ben Cousins and Julian O’Neill.
Sydney Roosters fullback James Tedesco landed the first blow for the 2018 award when he planted one on Italy teammate Shannon Wakeman during the Rugby League World Cup, in late 2017. This prompted a flurry of counter punches from Manly pair Daly Cherry-Evans and Jackson Hastings, who added some spice to their tussle by carrying it out in a strip club. Former Melbourne Storm besties Ben Roarty and Danny Williams had a lovers’ tiff on their way to a nomination for the Hall of Fame, the same honour for Jorge Taufua and Jacob Loko.
Super Rugby player Amanaki Mafi then rebelled against the Rebels when he had a run in with his Melbourne teammate Lopeti Timani. Fellow Rugby player and former Rebel Kurtley Beale punched Gareth Delve on a tour in South Africa and was sent home. Delve was not just Beale’s teammate but also his captain. Beale was also nominated for other discipline issues, including highly controversial texts sent to a team official.
AFL players also got it on. Campbell Brown earned his Hall of Fame nomination for breaking the jaw of teammate Steven May at a club in LA.
Frownlow favourite Karmichael Hunt chose drugs as his avenue for nomination, and while he didn’t fight with a teammate, he did dob on Steve Michaels. Michaels is apparently his best mate. Canberra Raiders fullback Jack Wighton is firming as equal favourite alongside Hunt. Wighton also didn’t clash with someone on his own team, but received a 10 game ban from the NRL for inflicting the Viking clap on a stranger at a pub.
Fortunately, all of the BFF’s have since kissed and made up and are now committed to putting the incidents behind them and moving forward, just in time for Australian sport’s night of nights, the award ceremony of The Frownlow Medal and The Frownlow Medal Hall of Fame, to be held very soon.
For more information about all of the contenders for the most prestigious awards in Australian sport, go to http://www.instagram/thefrownlowmedal.com.