Former AFL player Chris Yarran has torn apart The Frownlow Medal Hall of Fame in a desperate attempt to earn the highest honour in Australian sport. Yarran was nominated for Frownlow honours after being sentenced to jail for a drug-fuelled crime spree, and ransacked the hall of fame to honour its incumbents.
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.
Yarran destroyed plaques belonging to some of the greats of Australian football and stole a car belonging to one of the judges, before assaulting a security guard and escaping.
He later told judges, through his lawyer, that this was his last chance to impress the Frownlow panel before he becomes a guest of her majesty for five years. Knowing he only had limited time, Yarran tried to do as much damage as possible to prove that he belongs in the hall of fame, alongside many other ex-footballers who are also serving jail sentences.
The caretakers of The Frownlow Medal Hall of Fame moved quickly to clean up Yarran’s mess, as they are used to this kind of behaviour from footballers who are desperate to win the most prestigious award in Australian sport.
Yarran has certainly impressed Frownlow judges, but he will have to wait until later this year to find out if he has been inducted into the hall of fame.