The Frownlow Medal Hall of Fame has been re-named in honour of former AFL player Brian Taylor. The prestigious award will now be known as Il Gruppo di Personaggi Famosi di La Medaglia Frownlow, because
“That’s how they pronounce it in Italy.”
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. NRL player Shaun Kenny-Dowall won the inaugural medal in 2015 and code-swapper Karmichael Hunt was the most recent recipient.
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.
Taylor attracted heavy criticism recently for his pronunciation of the surname of Orazio Fantasia, while commentating for the AFL on channel 7. A number of people explained the correct pronunciation of Fantasia’s name, but Taylor refused to change the way he says the name, arguing that;
“We don’t pronounce Italian names in the full Italian way. We pronounce it with the Australianism in it, and that’s how we’ll continue to do it.”
This, despite the fact that Fantasia himself would like Taylor to pronounce his name differently.
The former Collingwood and Richmond player then defended his comments, stating that he loves Italian food, especially Fokakia, Parmedjana and Osso Bucko, paired of course with a Kappa Keino.
He also revealed that he plans to visit Pizza one day, especially after a friend explained to him that its famous tower leans because one side of it is made out of thick crust, while the other side contains thin crust.
Taylor is adamant that he will commentate on the sport he loves for many more years, or at least until Robert DiPierdomenico’s kids start playing first grade.