Why are we called Rebels?

Marika Koroibete, Isi Naisarani and Pone Fa’amausili play rugby for the Melbourne Rebels but got into trouble for being rebels. The trio were dropped from the next Wallabies game after breaking team curfew to have a few drinks together, and have earned nominations for The Frownlow Medal.

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.

Koroibete, Fa’amausili and Naisarani will not play in the Bledisloe Cup against the All Blacks after taking leftover alcohol to their room to continue drinking after an official team function. The players apparently kept drinking for more than two hours and were reported by a team official.

The official statement from the Wallabies said there was “no illegal behaviour, no damage and no complaints made. No further investigation will take place, or any further action”. Thus, there was no rebellion, aside from breaking curfew. Even when the Rebels rebelled they did not stage a rebellion or do anything particularly rebellious. They must be wondering why they’re called Rebels.

Koroibete was nominated for Frownlow honours in 2019 for ‘liking’ the homophobic social media posts which saw Israel Folau kicked out of rugby in Australia. Naisarani and Fa’amausili earn their first nominations, and all three players will be looking forward to the Frownlow awards night, where they can drink as much as they like for as long as they like.

Image: NuNa

Danny Cipriani and Richard Kingi order a bottle of vodka.

Rugby Union players Danny Cipriani and Richard Kingi have demanded a bottle of vodka be placed next to their plaques if they are inducted into The Frownlow Medal Hall of Fame. The former Melbourne Rebels players famously stole a bottle of vodka from a bar in 2011 when they weren’t supposed to be partying at all.

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.

The Rebels team had agreed that they would not go out after losing a game to the NSW Waratahs. Not only did Kingi and Cipriani hit the town, they souvenired a bottle of vodka from behind the bar at a nightclub. Why an England international and Wallaby would need to steal rather than pay for a drink is a mystery…

Cipriani then strengthened his Frownlow chances by staying out late on a different night and failing to turn up to training the next day.

In response to criticism, Kingi and Cipriani said,

“You call the club Rebels, so what do you expect?”

“You think we’re gonna be tucked up in bed by 10pm on a weekend?”

Cipriani and Kingi will both attend the awards night for The Frownlow Medal and The Frownlow Medal Hall of Fame later this year, and have been advised that there will be no need to steal drinks as the bar is open all night long.

Image: NuNa