NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian blocked the appointment of Mick Fuller to the Australian Rugby League Commission in order to help the NRL win back The Frownlow Medal.
Berejiklian denied the NSW Police Commissioner the opportunity to sit on the board of the ARLC because he is an expert in ‘setting behavioural expectations’ who would have prevented the NRL from winning back the medal they held for five straight years until 2020.
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, while AFL player Elijah Taylor is 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.
“I love Rugby League and the NRL,” boasted Berejiklian at a press conference.
“As a Sydney girl, I’ve always loved league more than AFL, Union and Soccer. I pretend to love Macarthur FC, for the same reason the Prime Minister pretends to love the Cronulla Sharks: it helps win votes.”
“I was devastated to see the AFL steal the Frownlow from us last year, and I’m determined to do whatever I can to make sure an NRL player wins it this year. For this reason, I used my power as premier to block the appointment of Mr Fuller to the ARLC board because he would have stamped out player misbehaviour and held wayward players to account. If NRL players are not allowed to get up to mischief off the field, they’ll never win the Frownlow.”
The league-loving premier also asked the public to show greater understanding towards footballers when they misbehave.
“Footballers, like politicians, are role models to young Australians, so we should not be too quick to judge their personal behaviour. The LNP rewards misbehaviour with promotion and ministerial appointments, and naughty footballers are rewarded with nominations for The Frownlow Medal. I would hate to see either of these situations change.”
The Premier then confirmed that her own party is no stranger to personal scandal and protecting people who commit those scandals.
“Right now, our nation’s leader seems to be protecting an alleged rapist who works for the LNP, at the same time that four rugby league players are under investigation for sexual assault.”
“Finally, this issue is also a great way to distract the public from the failures of my government.”