Josh Kennedy (footballer, born 1987)
|Full name||Joshua J. Kennedy|
|Date of birth||25 August 1987|
|Place of birth||Melbourne, Victoria|
|Original team||Northampton (GNFL)|
|Draft||4th overall, 2005 National Draft (Carlton)|
|Height/Weight||196 cm / 99 kg|
|Current club||West Coast|
1 Playing statistics correct to end of end of 2014 season.
Joshua J. "Josh" Kennedy (born 25 August 1987) is an Australian rules footballer currently listed with the West Coast Eagles in the Australian Football League (AFL), having previously also played for Carlton. Originally playing with the East Fremantle Football Club in the West Australian Football League (WAFL), he was recruited to Carlton with the fourth pick overall in the 2005 National Draft. Kennedy played 22 games for Carlton before being traded to the West Coast prior to the 2008 season, in a deal involving the club's captain at the time, Chris Judd. Over the following seasons at West Coast, he established himself as a key forward, first at centre half-forward and later in more of a full-forward role. Kennedy led the club's goalkicking during the 2011 and 2013 seasons, and has kicked over 250 goals during his career. He is considered one of the best tall forwards in the competition, and was one of the leading goalkickers in the league's 2013 season. After Darren Glass retired midway through the 2014 season, Kennedy was named acting co-captain of the club for the remainder of the season, along with four other players.
Early life and junior career
Kennedy was born in Melbourne, and grew up in Canberra, Townsville, and Perth, with his family finally settling in Northampton, a small country town north of Geraldton, Western Australia. His parents, Jenny Peterson and Jamie Kennedy, both played basketball professionally, in the Women's National Basketball League and National Basketball League, respectively, having first met as scholarship holders at the Australian Institute of Sport (AIS). Kennedy played both football and basketball growing up, and represented Western Australia's state under-16 basketball team. He later concentrated on football, playing for Northampton in the Great Northern Football League (GNFL), and often appeared alongside Harry Taylor, another future AFL player. Kennedy played for the state football team at both under-16 and under-18 level, and was named in the under-18 All-Australian team at conclusion of the 2005 AFL Under-18 Championships. He had attended the AIS/AFL Academy in Canberra the previous year, and toured Ireland with an academy side, playing several international rules matches, and thus became the first child of two previous AIS scholarship holders to also attend the institute. With Northampton falling into the recruitment zone of the Perth-based East Fremantle Football Club, Kennedy made his senior West Australian Football League (WAFL) debut during the 2005 season, finishing with six goals from six games. He was selected by Carlton with pick four in the 2005 AFL National Draft, held in November 2005.
In 2006, Kennedy showed promises that he could be a future key-position forward, having made his debut in round six. However, he struggled for ground time and form when playing at the AFL level, scoring only 5.4 from his nine games. In Carlton's VFL-affiliate, the Northern Bullants, he found it easier to show his skills with eighteen goals for the season.
In 2007 Kennedy committed to a new 2 year contract with the Carlton Football Club. However on 11 October, it was announced that he had agreed to return to his native state and play for the West Coast Eagles, thus enabling Carlton to secure the services of top midfielder Chris Judd in a trade.
On 26 April 2008, Josh Kennedy, wearing number 17, made his debut for the West Coast Eagles against the Western Bulldogs. In Round 9, 2011, Kennedy kicked ten goals against the Western Bulldogs, becoming just the fourth Eagle (after Scott Cummings, Peter Sumich and Mark LeCras) to kick ten goals in a game.
After playing in struggling teams at the start of his career – four of Kennedy's first six seasons resulted in bottom two finishes, including two wooden spoons, one each at Carlton and West Coast – Kennedy made his first finals appearance in 2011. Kennedy won only 14 of the first 67 matches of his career. However his record has since improved; as of the end of 2012, he has won 23 of his last 32 matches to have a career win-draw-loss record of 37-1-61.
In the 2013 AFL Season, Kennedy was in front of the Coleman Medal nearly every week. But with the Eagles losing their last three games by an average margin of 71 points and Kennedy being goal-less in each of them, he lost his chance of winning the medal.
On the 30th March 2014 Kennedy played his 100th game for the Eagles, kicking four goals and one behind in a 93-point thrashing of Melbourne at the MCG. In Round 8, 2014 Kennedy bagged 11 goals straight in a 111 point win over the Giants. He would then go on to kick bags of 7 and 8 both against the suns. He finished the year with 61 goals.
- Alex Malcolm (13 June 2014). Up to five could rotate West Coast captaincy – Australian Football League. Retrieved 13 June 2014.
- Craig O'Donoghue (2005). "Moving not so scary for Kennedy" – The West Australian. Published 1 October 2005. Retrieved from Factiva, 5 August 2013.
- Matt Burgan (2005). "It's AFL, not NBL for Kennedy" – Australian Football League. Published 29 September 2005. Retrieved from One Eyed Richmond, 4 August 2013.
- Courtney Walsh (2007). "Eagles land a reluctant catch" – The Australian. Published 12 October 2007. Retrieved 4 August 2013.
- Mark Duffield (2011). When Harry met Josh in Northampton – The West Australian. Published 8 July 2011. Retrieved 4 August 2013.
- Kevin Sheehan (2005). NAB AFL U18 Championships: All Australians – Australian Football League. Published 4 July 2005. Retrieved from AFL Tasmania, 4 August 2013.
- Ray Wilson (2008). "Jumping Josh son of a gun" – The West Australian. Published 2 May 2008. Retrieved from Factiva, 5 August 2013.
- Joshua KENNEDY (East Fremantle) – West Australian Football League. Retrieved 4 August 2013.
- Joshua Kennedy – Footywire AFL Statistics. Retrieved 4 August 2013.
- "Judd deal completed". AAP. 11 October 2007.
- Schmook, Nathan. "Kennedy soars". Retrieved 23 May 2011.
- AFL Tables - Josh Kennedy - Statistics
- West Coast Eagles Player Profile
- Josh Kennedy's statistics from AFL Tables
- Josh Kennedy Profile in Blueseum