Harley Bennell

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Harley Bennell
Personal information
Full name Harley Bennell
Date of birth (1992-10-02) 2 October 1992 (age 22)
Original team Peel Thunder (WAFL)
Draft #2, 2010 National Draft, Gold Coast
Height/Weight 185cm / 74kg
Position(s) Utility
Club information
Current club Gold Coast
Number 11
Playing career1
Years Club Games (Goals)
2011– Gold Coast 51 (58)
Representative team honours
Years Team Games (Goals)
2013 Indigenous All-Stars 1
1 Playing statistics correct to end of 2013 season.
Career highlights
  • Inaugural Gold Coast AFL team
  • Polly Farmer Medal 2013

Harley Bennell (born Harley Nannup; 2 October 1992) is an Australian rules footballer, drafted with the second selection in the 2010 AFL Draft by the Gold Coast Football Club.[1] Bennell was recruited from Peel Thunder Football Club, who play in the West Australian Football League.[2]

Early life[edit]

Born into an indigenous family of nine children, Harley Bennell is third eldest of his siblings. He is the brother of former Collingwood Football Club rookie listed player John Bennell[3] and the cousin of West Coast Eagles player, Jamie Bennell.

Junior football[edit]

Bennell began playing football competitively at the Pinjarra Junior Football Club at the age of 13. He competed in the juniors side for two years before going through the 2007 season undefeated with his team and tasted his first premiership at age 15. The following year Bennell began playing for the under 16s team at the Peel Thunder Football Club before breaking into the under 18s side and played forward predominately. In 2009 Bennell would be named captain of his high school team at Mandurah Senior College and would go on to play several games for the Peel seniors team in the WAFL at 16 years of age. Despite his success in 2008 and 2009 with Peel, Bennell's lack of height would see him not picked for the Western Australian state representative teams and was told by many people to start focusing on Basketball instead of Football.

Following the 2009 season he was offered an AIS scholarship. By the start of the 2010 season Bennell had experienced a growth spurt and selectors began to take more notice of him as he solidified a spot in the Peel Thunder seniors side. During the 2010 season Bennell would also be picked for the Western Australian under 18s team that competed in the AFL National Under 18 Championships, he would walk away with the Larke Medal which is awarded to the best player of the tournament. Bennell would cap off a stunning 2010 season by being picked number 2 in the 2010 AFL Draft by the Gold Coast Suns.

AFL career[edit]

He made his AFL debut in Round 2, 2011 in the Gold Coast Suns inaugural AFL match against Carlton at The Gabba. Bennell was dropped for disciplinary reasons after the Gold Coast's round 3 clash. He returned to the team the following week but was again dropped two weeks later. He spent numerous weeks playing for the reserves team and returned to the seniors team for their round 11 clash against the West Coast Eagles in Perth. Bennell would then skip a compulsory training session by staying in Perth longer than allowed by the club. He was once again dropped from the team and sent back to the reserves team. He showed enough in the reserves to earn a recall to the seniors team in round 15 but the Sun's leadership group did not allow him back into the team. The following week he returned against the Sydney Swans and soon after began living with team mate Karmichael Hunt. He would not miss another game and finish the 2011 season with 14 goals from 14 games.

Bennell's 2012 season would be a stark difference to his inaugural AFL year, he would play in all 22 games of the year. He would also end the year with 25 goals and finish second in the club's best and fairest behind Gary Ablett Jr.

Representative football[edit]

Bennell made his representative debut for the Indegenous All-Stars in 2013 against the Richmond Tigers. He was named man of the match and received the Polly Farmer medal for his efforts.[4]


Statistics are correct to end of 2012 season.[5][6]
Season Team # Games G B K H D M T G B K H D M T
Totals Averages (per game)
2011 Gold Coast 37 14 14 16 111 135 246 41 33 1.0 1.1 7.9 9.6 17.5 2.9 2.3
2012 Gold Coast 11 22 25 18 273 248 521 72 48 1.1 0.8 12.4 11.2 23.6 3.2 2.1
Career 36 39 34 384 383 767 113 81 1.1 0.9 10.7 10.6 21.3 3.1 2.3
 G  Goals  B  Behinds  K  Kicks  H  Handballs  D  Disposals  M  Marks  T  Tackles


  1. ^ WA players selected in this year's draft
  2. ^ WAFL Online player profile
  3. ^ Quayle, Emma (5 November 2010)Picks of the draft: Harley Bennell
  4. ^ Edmund, Sam (9 February 2013). "Embarrassing Richmond no match for Indigenous hunger, speed". goldcoast.com.au. 
  5. ^ "Harley Bennell statistics". AFL Tables. Retrieved 23 September 2012. 
  6. ^ "Harley Bennell of the Geelong Cats Career AFL Stats". Footywire.com. Retrieved 23 September 2012. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
David Swallow
Larke Medal
Succeeded by
Stephen Coniglio
Preceded by
Karmichael Hunt
Gold Coast Suns' Most Improved Player
Succeeded by
Rory Thompson
Preceded by
Matt Campbell
Polly Farmer Medal
Succeeded by