Former NRL player Jamil Hopoate has been awarded a Wife Beater Tattoo from The Frownlow Medal after pleading guilty to hitting his partner in December 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.
Hopoate recently admitted to two charges of common assault which included hitting his partner to the ground with an open palm before allegedly getting in his car and driving away from a club in Port Macquarie. The former Manly and Brisbane player had already argued with and spat on security guards, and sped off after assaulting the mother of his nine-month-old child.
It is alleged that Hopoate’s partner asked him to leave the club’s poker room and go home but he threw his partner’s key card to the ground and was thrown out of the venue by security. He then threatened to bash the guards, and was later pulled over and charged with drink driving. Meanwhile, his partner was taken to hospital for treatment.
Hopoate joins a long list of professional footballers who have earned Wife Beater tattoos, including:
Elijah Taylor (2020 Frownlow Medallist)
Sam Burgess (premiership winner, England international)
Scott Bolton (premiership winner)
Zane Tetevano (premiership winner, New Zealand international)
Ben Barba (premiership winner, Dally M medallist)
Jake Friend (premiership winning captain, Origin)
Richie Fa’aoso (premiership winner, Tonga international)
Addin Fonua-Blake (Tonga international)
Kirisome Auva’a (premiership winner, Samoa international)
Greg Inglis (premiership winner, Origin winner, Australian captain – for a few hours)
Ken McGuinness (NSW Origin)
and Dylan Walker (premiership winner, Origin, Australia)
And let’s not forget Craig Wells, who was found guilty of raping a teenage girl after plying her with illicit drugs. A far cry from playing for the Wallabies.