Brisbane Lions' pre-season training, January 2010
|Full name||Brendan Fevola|
|Nickname(s)||Fev, The Shag, Fevalenko, The Fevolution|
|Date of birth||20 January 1981|
|Original team(s)||Dandenong Stingrays (TAC Cup)|
|Draft||No. 38, 1998 National Draft, Carlton|
|Height/Weight||191cm / 100 kg|
|Representative team honours|
1 Playing statistics correct to the end of 2011.
Fevola is regarded as one of the most effective full-forwards to have played AFL in the 2000s, having won the Coleman Medal for league leading goalkicker in 2006 and 2009 (kicking 84 and 86 goals respectively) as well as All-Australian selection as a forward three times since 2006. His representative honours include playing for Victoria where he was awarded the Allen Aylett Medal for being the state team's best player and leading goalkicker. During his career at Carlton, he was the club's leading goalkicker and key forward from 2003 until 2009. However, throughout his career he has been a controversial figure off the field, which ultimately led to his parting company with both of his AFL clubs.
Brendan was born to parents Angelo Fevola (an Italian Australian who represented Victoria in lacrosse) and Karen Ralph in 1981. His parents split when he was eight years old. For a short time he attended a Catholic school.
Fevola began playing football with the Beaconsfield Junior Football Club in the Dandenong & District Junior Football League before playing senior football in the Victorian Country Football League. His ability to kick goals for the Dandenong Stingrays earned him selection in the TAC Cup Team of the Year in 1998 and attracted the eye of recruiters and was one of three talented AFL prospects featured in the television documentary "The Draft".
Fevola was recruited to Carlton Football Club with selection No. 38 overall in the 1998 AFL Draft. Early in his career he showed signs of being a brilliant kick of the ball and a prospective key position player at full forward. During a pre-season game on 31 December 1999 against Collingwood (promoted as the "Millennium Match"), he kicked 12 goals.
The promising talent was given the No. 25 guernsey made famous by Carlton legend Alex Jesaulenko.
However Fevola struggled to maintain form over the next few years, playing in 39 games and kicking 66 goals between 2000 and 2002, with noticeably poor body language on-field as well as causing bad publicity through incidents off-field. Carlton coach Wayne Brittain had intended to trade or delist Fevola at the end of the 2002 season; however, after Carlton's poor season (in which it won the wooden spoon) Brittain was himself sacked, and incoming coach Denis Pagan reversed Brittain's decision.
Pagan's arrival had an immediate impact on Fevola's discipline and form. In Round 5, 2003, Fevola kicked 8 goals against the Kangaroos, helping win the game for Carlton and launching himself into the eyes of AFL viewers. Fevola's unkempt dreadlocks and extroverted personality in the media earned him the nickname "The Shag" by fans.
Fevola's early goalkicking inconsistency saw him experiment with unorthodox styles of handling the ball in approach to taking set shots. In 2004, Fevola developed a ritualistic set-shot routine of taking three quick steps to shoot on goal, and this resulted in a significant increase in goalkicking accuracy, particularly from long distance. The duration of his ritual, at times taking longer than a minute, became a point of contention, and was partially responsible for the introduction of a new rule in 2006 (commonly referred to as "the Lloyd Rule" after Essendon's Matthew Lloyd, who had a similarly lengthy set shot ritual), limiting the duration permitted to take a set shot to 30 seconds, before play-on would be called. Fevola's ritual was duly shortened to accommodate the new rule.
In 2006, Fevola capped off a stunning year and his best to that point by kicking 84 goals and winning the Coleman Medal and All-Australian selection. He scored 59 goals in 2007, then followed this up in 2008 with his career best of 99 goals for the season, seeing him finish second behind Lance Franklin in the race for the Coleman Medal. He was selected for Victoria in the once-off AFL Hall of Fame Tribute Match in 2008, kicking six goals and winning the Allen Aylett Medal as best on ground.
In 2009, Fevola won his second Coleman Medal, kicking 86 goals for the season, eight goals clear of the runner up Jonathan Brown. He is the only Carlton player ever to win the League goal-kicking twice, and it was his seventh consecutive season as the club's leading goalkicker; only Stephen Kernahan (11) had won the award more times consecutively.
Carlton announced on 30 September 2009 that it would seek a trade for Fevola during the 2009 trade week due to his off-field behaviour, most specifically due to antics at the 2009 Brownlow Medal Count. On 9 October, he was officially traded to the Brisbane Lions, along with a second round draft pick (#27 overall) in exchange for Brisbane's Lachlan Henderson and a first round draft pick (#12 overall). Additionally, Carlton agreed to pay $100,000 of Fevola's salary for each of the two years remaining on his existing contract. Fevola left Carlton as a life member of the club, after playing 187 senior games for 575 goals – the third most goals by any player in Carlton Football Club history. Despite the circumstances of his departure, Carlton has stated that Fevola's life membership was not affected, and that he remained welcome at the club.
At Brisbane, Fevola was given the Number 5 guernsey. He made his debut in Brisbane colours in the NAB Cup loss to the Western Bulldogs on 14 February 2010. The following Friday afternoon, a trial match against his old club Carlton at Visy Park attracted 10,000 fans. He made his senior debut for the Lions in the first round of the 2010 season at the Gabba against the West Coast Eagles.
In 2010, his only season at the Brisbane Lions, Fevola played 17 games for 48 goals. He was dogged by further off-field controversy over the 2010/11 offseason, and was officially sacked by the club on 20 February 2011.
On 6 April 2011, Fevola signed to play with the Casey Scorpions in the Victorian Football League in 2011. He kicked 63 goals during the home and away season, with 43 of those coming in the final six games of the season, to finish second behind Port Melbourne's Patrick Rose (67 goals) in the league goalkicking, and he kicked a further six goals in finals. His contract with the Scorpions was not renewed for 2012. He played six games for Waratah in the 2011/12 NTFL season, kicking 49 goals.
In 2012, Fevola signed to play home matches with Yarrawonga in the Ovens & Murray Football League. Interest in Fevola's presence was a significant financial boon for both Yarrawonga and the O&M in 2012, with an increase in attendances and gate takings across the league compared with previous seasons; such was Fevola's ability to draw a crowd that some rival clubs paid Fevola to play against them in Yarrawonga's away matches. Fevola remained at Yarrawonga for four seasons from 2012 until 2015, kicking 357 goals from 65 matches and being part of back-to-back premierships in 2012 and 2013. He was coach of the O&M's interleague representative team in 2014 and 2015, served as a playing co-coach of Yarrawonga in 2015, and holds the record for most goals in a game at Yarrawonga, kicking 16 goals in a match in late 2014. Fevola will return to Melbourne and play for Deer Park in the Western Region Football League from 2016.
During his post-AFL career, Fevola also played once-off matches for several local clubs around the country, earning appearance fees which the clubs financed by the large crowds he could draw. Among the clubs was former TANFL club New Norfolk, now in Tasmania's Southern Football League, where in 2012 he drew a record home crowd for the club and kicked eighteen goals to set a new club record; he returned for another game in 2013, this time kicking sixteen goals.
Best career games
Fevola's best goalkicking haul in an AFL match was nine goals, scored for Carlton against Richmond in 2009. Prior to this, he had scored eight goals on eight separate occasions. In his one season with the Brisbane Lions, Fevola's highest tally was 5.2 (32).
|Round 5||2003||Carlton||North Melbourne||8||2|
In AFL matches outside the premiership season, Fevola's best effort was a haul of twelve goals, scored for Carlton against Collingwood in the 2000 pre-season match known as the Millennium Match; and, he had two other eight-goal hauls in pre-season matches: the 2005 Wizard Cup grand final against West Coast, earning him the Michael Tuck Medal, and in the semi-final of the 2007 NAB Cup against North Melbourne. He scored hauls of eleven and ten goals in matches for Casey during the 2011 VFL season, against Frankston and the Northern Bullants respectively.
|Led the league for the season only|
|Led the league after finals only|
|Led the league after season and finals|
|Totals||Averages (per game)|
- Michael Tuck Medal 2005
- Coleman Medal 2006, 2009
- All Australian 2006, 2008, 2009
- Carlton leading goalkicker 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009
- 3rd – Most Career Goals For Carlton – 575*
- NAB Cup Premiership Player 2005, 2007
- Australian International Rules squad 2006 (did not play for disciplinary reasons)
- VFL/AFL Italian Team of the Century 2007
- Victorian State Representative In Hall Of Fame Tribute Match
- Allen Aylett Medallist
Fevola was a regular panellist on The Footy Show on the Nine Network, and was noted for his larrikin persona. His tenure as a panellist ended after his behaviour at the 2009 Brownlow Medal Count, the same event which led to the end of his time at Carlton.
Fevloa starred in the second season of I'm a Celebrity...Get Me Out of Here!, which he won and was crowned King Of The Jungle. The prize for taking out the title was $100,000 to be donated to his chosen charity. Felova decided to split the winnings evenly between his chosen charity, Shane Warne Foundation, and series runner-up Paul Harragon's chosen charity, Mark Hughes Foundation.
On 7 October 2005, Fevola married Alex Cheatham at St John's Church in Toorak. However, on 12 December 2006 it was announced that they were separated after 14 months of marriage, amid allegations of Fevola's infidelity with an Australian model, rumoured to be Lara Bingle. Alex stated in a Woman's Day interview that Fevola had become "disconnected" from her following the birth of Leni. Bingle later confessed to the five-week affair, claiming that being a Sydney girl, she did not know that Fevola was married until she heard his baby in the background during a phone conversation.
Fevola has three daughters, Mia (Alex's child from a previous relationship), Leni and Lulu.
Fevola owned a restaurant called Fellini located in Toorak Road, South Yarra. Fevola has also been noted as studying criminology via correspondence at Griffith University and says that becoming a police officer is a possible career after football.
Controversies and legal issues
Fevola's successful on-field career has been continually contrasted with his controversial off-field behaviour. He has been diagnosed with depression, and underwent 51 days of extensive rehabilitation in 2011; both his agent and manager have associated many of Fevola's antics with his depression.
In 2001, he was involved in an attempted theft of jackets from a drycleaners in North Melbourne; he was fined $8000 by Carlton for the incident. On 8 March 2004, he was involved in an incident at Crown Casino; no charges were laid, but he was suspended by Carlton for a week. In 2006 Fevola assaulted a barman during a tour of Ireland in 2006 with the Australian International Rules team, and was sent back to Australia. In March 2008, Fevola was fined $10,000 by the club and stood down from the leadership group after urinating on a window outside a Melbourne nightclub. After this incident, Carlton did not suspend or delist Fevola, saying that taking such action would not assist Fevola in addressing his problems, but he was put on his final warning.
In September 2009, Fevola was fined $10,000 and banned from appearing on the Grand Final Footy Show after behaving inappropriately at the 2009 Brownlow Medal count. Fevola withdrew from the traditional lap of honour by the Coleman Medallist at the 2009 AFL Grand Final and did not attend Carlton's award night. As a result of the incident, he was traded to the Brisbane Lions, and did not return as a panellist on The Footy Show in 2010.
On 2 March 2010, Lara Bingle started proceedings to sue Fevola for breach of privacy, defamation and misuse of her image for the release of a nude photo in Woman's Day released on 1 March 2010; but on 9 April, Fevola was cleared of the charges against him. In September 2010 it was announced that Queensland police had launched a formal investigation into claims that Fevola had flashed a woman at a Brisbane park during a football clinic, but again there were no charges laid; the Brisbane Lions also suspended him independently while it conducted its own investigation into the event.
Early on 1 January 2011, New Year's Day, Fevola was arrested in Brisbane on charges of public nuisance and obstructing police. He was released on bail and is scheduled to appear in court on 18 January. The Brisbane Lions granted him indefinite leave, before terminating his contract after receiving medical advice.
In 2010, it became public that Fevola was addicted to gambling, mostly playing poker and punting on horses. He accumulated significant debts from gambling. In a paid interview with the Footy Show in early 2011, Fevola further discussed his addiction, revealing that he spent 65 days in rehabilitation, had lost almost a million dollars gambling, including $365,000 in one day of horse punting, and that his addiction almost drove him to suicide during Christmas 2010.
- Lane, Samantha (12 May 2007). "Raising Fevola". The Age. Retrieved 2 January 2011.
- AFL DRAFT 1998
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- Sydney Morning Herald, "Lloyd Rule to speed up goalkicking", 26 November 2005. Retrieved 14 April 2011.
- AFL Tables, Carlton Leading Goalkicker. Retrieved 14 April 2011.
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- McAuliffe, Chris (26 September 2008). "Art and football", The Age. Retrieved 16 June 2014.
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- Hannah Driscoll (20 September 2015). "Brendan Fevola farewells Yarrawonga as Pigeons' season ends". The Weekly Times. Retrieved 20 September 2015.
- Jake Bourke (13 February 2014). "Brendan Fevola: I want to coach Yarrawonga". The Border Mail. Retrieved 24 March 2014.
- Nick Fogarty (3 October 2014). "Brendan Fevola to co-coach Yarrawonga in Ovens and Murray AFL". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 25 January 2015.
- John Clarke (25 August 2014). "Fevola now Yarrawonga Pigeons great". The Border Mail. Albury, NSW. Retrieved 25 August 2014.
- "Former Carlton forward Brendan Fevola in demand as gun for hire in local football leagues across Australia". Herald Sun. Melbourne, VIC. 7 May 2015. Retrieved 20 September 2015.
- Smith, Adam (17 June 2012). "Brendan Fevola sends record books tumbling at Boyer Oval". Herald Sun. Retrieved 17 June 2012.
- Seaton, Damien (30 June 2013). "Hero Fevola boots 16". The Mercury. Hobart, TAS. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
- Brendan Fevola's player profile at AFL Tables
- Ham, L., The Age, "Footy Show axes Fevola after Brownlow Antics", 23 September 2009. Retrieved 14 April 2011.
- Bingle blamed for Fevola marriage break-up
- Bingle 'clears the decks' on Fevola affair from brisbanetimes.com.au
- "Brendan Fevola's career hanging by thread". 8 March 2004. Retrieved 11 August 2010.
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- Hunter, Thomas; Millar, Paul (9 September 2010). "Police to investigate alleged Fevola flashing". The Age. Melbourne.
- Trenwith, Courtney; Pierik, Jon (1 January 2011). "Fevola on leave after NYE arrest". The Age. Melbourne.
- "Lions sack Fevola". ABC News. 20 February 2011. Retrieved 20 February 2011.
- Hamilton, A., Herald Sun, "Brendan Fevola of the Brisbane Lions admits gambling addiction", 15 April 2010. Retrieved 14 April 2011.