Sydney Swans AFL footballer Michael Talia was so excited about playing his first game of the current season, that he got himself arrested for possession of drugs in an attempt to win the 2016 Frownlow Medal.
Talia was arrested recently in Sydney’s Double Bay in possession of cocaine and is currently banned from training and other Swans club activities.
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. The first medal was awarded to Sydney Roosters and New Zealand representative Shaun Kenny-Dowall in 2015.
The Frownlow Medal Hall of Fame honours players who received media attention in previous seasons, for similarly scandalous behaviour, and its inductees include Ben Cousins and Todd Carney.
Talia claimed the level of competition prompted his decision to purchase illicit substances, before explaining the timing of his actions.
“As soon as I found out I’d be playing first grade, I went out and got the drugs.”
“I knew that players have to be playing first grade if they want to win the Frownlow Medal and I really had to take advantage of the situation to get my name on the board. Plus, I saw Kieren (Jack) get nominated for the twitter battle and I thought that being arrested for drugs would give me a better chance of winning the medal than having a fight with your mum.”
Talia’s playing future will be decided in the next few weeks, while the outcome of the Frownlow Medal will be known in October.