Player Watch #10: Ben Cunnington - routine checkup finds recurrence of cancer - Cunners to undergo 9wk chemo regime - go well Cunners

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Kanga Glory

Premium Platinum
Nov 1, 2010
5,628
13,513
arden st
AFL Club
North Melbourne
Roo up for fight of life
SCOTT GULLAN
NORTH Melbourne star Ben Cunnington says he is ready to attack his latest cancer setback “head on”.

Cunnington was diagnosed with a secondary bout of testicular cancer last week, which will require an intensive course of chemotherapy.

He had surgery to remove a tumour in July but more cancer was found during a routine check-up.

Cunnington, 30, released a statement on Instagram saying he was overwhelmed with all the support he’d received.

“I’ll be undergoing treatment on the cancer that appeared in the last couple of weeks,” Cunnington said.

“I can reassure everyone that I’m in a good head space and ready to attack this head on with a great support team by my side.

“It’s been a couple of months since my initial diagnosis and I can’t tell you how grateful we’ve been for the love and support from so many people in that time.

“It means the world to me and my family.”

Cunnington is expected to make a full recovery following a nine-week course of chemotherapy.

He last played in round 19 and despite missing the final four games of the season, the tough midfielder finished second in the Kangaroos bestand-fairest award.
 

Horizons_00

Norm Smith Medallist
Sep 11, 2014
7,207
13,050
Adelaide
AFL Club
North Melbourne
This may be an unpopular opinion but I wouldn’t begrudge him if he, at the end of 2022 or at anytime between now and then, decided to pull the pin.
I don’t think he’ll play footy after 2022 but I bloody hope I’m wrong. He loves this group and loves this club. May be good for him :)
 

Bennymate

Club Legend
May 26, 2013
1,316
2,269
Melbourne
AFL Club
North Melbourne
Other Teams
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I don’t think he’ll play footy after 2022 but I bloody hope I’m wrong. He loves this group and loves this club. May be good for him :)
And if he does decide to the hang up the boots, it would be fantastic from the club to offer him a coaching role at some capacity, provided he is in right headspace and is healthy. He would be a mastermind during clearance/stoppage drills.
 

Shinboner1

Premiership Player
Aug 13, 2020
4,484
8,205
AFL Club
North Melbourne
And if he does decide to the hang up the boots, it would be fantastic from the club to offer him a coaching role at some capacity, provided he is in right headspace and is healthy. He would be a mastermind during clearance/stoppage drills.
He'll just go live the farm life
 

brooksnk

Rookie
May 29, 2021
20
104
AFL Club
North Melbourne
I was just thinking today about the hole that will be left when Cunnington retires. With his future unknown, there is every chance he might not play again - of course, his health is a priority and I don't mean to distract from that, but I cant help but think about what a North side looks without him.

He doesn't do anything flashy, he is just a hard as nails and an elite decision maker and executor, not to mention throwing around 90kg+ opposition at will to make space for himself. He is more than the engine of the midfield - I can't quite find the right words to describe it, but I am sure all North fans who watch him week in week out understand and appreciate the unique impact he has on a game and the nuances of his skills that sets him apart from the many other star midfielders of the game.

He has got more appreciation/recognition externally over the last few years - but I truly don't think 90% of opposition fans really understand how good this guy is at football.

So I am just feeling sad over the fact that his time remaining in the game is quite limited if not potentially over (god forbid). Being 26, I really only have seen us play since the early-mid 2000's - the only other time I felt we would be left which a hole like this was when Boomer was walked out (F U Scott). Players like this are few and far between. We have had other great players in my time watching...Archer, Stevens, Simpson, Swallow, Goldstein....but their impending retirements never evoked this same feeling like it did with Harvey and now Cunnington.

Just wanted to share that.
 

the big lebowski

Brownlow Medallist
Oct 4, 2006
11,363
21,177
The hood
AFL Club
North Melbourne
I was just thinking today about the hole that will be left when Cunnington retires. With his future unknown, there is every chance he might not play again - of course, his health is a priority and I don't mean to distract from that, but I cant help but think about what a North side looks without him.

He doesn't do anything flashy, he is just a hard as nails and an elite decision maker and executor, not to mention throwing around 90kg+ opposition at will to make space for himself. He is more than the engine of the midfield - I can't quite find the right words to describe it, but I am sure all North fans who watch him week in week out understand and appreciate the unique impact he has on a game and the nuances of his skills that sets him apart from the many other star midfielders of the game.

He has got more appreciation/recognition externally over the last few years - but I truly don't think 90% of opposition fans really understand how good this guy is at football.

So I am just feeling sad over the fact that his time remaining in the game is quite limited if not potentially over (god forbid). Being 26, I really only have seen us play since the early-mid 2000's - the only other time I felt we would be left which a hole like this was when Boomer was walked out (F U Scott). Players like this are few and far between. We have had other great players in my time watching...Archer, Stevens, Simpson, Swallow, Goldstein....but their impending retirements never evoked this same feeling like it did with Harvey and now Cunnington.

Just wanted to share that.
His handballing is brighter than flashy. It’s the brightest light in the universe.
 

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Hearts to hearts

Brownlow Medallist
Mar 16, 2001
21,217
39,451
Melbourne VIC
AFL Club
North Melbourne
Other Teams
Wales, Eastwood, West Ham
I was just thinking today about the hole that will be left when Cunnington retires. With his future unknown, there is every chance he might not play again - of course, his health is a priority and I don't mean to distract from that, but I cant help but think about what a North side looks without him.

He doesn't do anything flashy, he is just a hard as nails and an elite decision maker and executor, not to mention throwing around 90kg+ opposition at will to make space for himself. He is more than the engine of the midfield - I can't quite find the right words to describe it, but I am sure all North fans who watch him week in week out understand and appreciate the unique impact he has on a game and the nuances of his skills that sets him apart from the many other star midfielders of the game.

He has got more appreciation/recognition externally over the last few years - but I truly don't think 90% of opposition fans really understand how good this guy is at football.

So I am just feeling sad over the fact that his time remaining in the game is quite limited if not potentially over (god forbid). Being 26, I really only have seen us play since the early-mid 2000's - the only other time I felt we would be left which a hole like this was when Boomer was walked out (F U Scott). Players like this are few and far between. We have had other great players in my time watching...Archer, Stevens, Simpson, Swallow, Goldstein....but their impending retirements never evoked this same feeling like it did with Harvey and now Cunnington.

Just wanted to share that.
I was rewatching the win over Carlton (don’t judge me) since the latest news, and thinking “we’ll be ok, the other younger mids are really stepping up here even though Cunners is playing”, just before the commentators mentioned that he had more possessions than anyone else on the ground. It doesn’t have to be flashy (although it often is), he is just at the heart of everything with his body and his brilliant hands and mind.
 

Horizons_00

Norm Smith Medallist
Sep 11, 2014
7,207
13,050
Adelaide
AFL Club
North Melbourne
I was just thinking today about the hole that will be left when Cunnington retires. With his future unknown, there is every chance he might not play again - of course, his health is a priority and I don't mean to distract from that, but I cant help but think about what a North side looks without him.

He doesn't do anything flashy, he is just a hard as nails and an elite decision maker and executor, not to mention throwing around 90kg+ opposition at will to make space for himself. He is more than the engine of the midfield - I can't quite find the right words to describe it, but I am sure all North fans who watch him week in week out understand and appreciate the unique impact he has on a game and the nuances of his skills that sets him apart from the many other star midfielders of the game.

He has got more appreciation/recognition externally over the last few years - but I truly don't think 90% of opposition fans really understand how good this guy is at football.

So I am just feeling sad over the fact that his time remaining in the game is quite limited if not potentially over (god forbid). Being 26, I really only have seen us play since the early-mid 2000's - the only other time I felt we would be left which a hole like this was when Boomer was walked out (F U Scott). Players like this are few and far between. We have had other great players in my time watching...Archer, Stevens, Simpson, Swallow, Goldstein....but their impending retirements never evoked this same feeling like it did with Harvey and now Cunnington.

Just wanted to share that.
I would love for him to come to the club as a midfield or development coach after he takes years away from footy to fish once he retires
 

The Dingrel

Premiership Player
Jun 25, 2013
3,240
4,955
Brisbane
AFL Club
North Melbourne
Other Teams
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I was rewatching the win over Carlton (don’t judge me) since the latest news, and thinking “we’ll be ok, the other younger mids are really stepping up here even though Cunners is playing”, just before the commentators mentioned that he had more possessions than anyone else on the ground. It doesn’t have to be flashy (although it often is), he is just at the heart of everything with his body and his brilliant hands and mind.
The goal against the Eagles, after LDU danced around a few, found Slevo, straight to cunners ....goal....that was flashy, and rare celbration from him....Special.
 

ferball

Premium Platinum
Jul 24, 2015
27,811
53,010
AFL Club
North Melbourne
I was rewatching the win over Carlton (don’t judge me) since the latest news, and thinking “we’ll be ok, the other younger mids are really stepping up here even though Cunners is playing”, just before the commentators mentioned that he had more possessions than anyone else on the ground. It doesn’t have to be flashy (although it often is), he is just at the heart of everything with his body and his brilliant hands and mind.

He often has most gravity, and everything just moves around him. Its weird.
 

travelli

Team Captain
Mar 4, 2014
596
1,070
AFL Club
North Melbourne
It's not his highlight at all, but I always remember that game he played last year under Shaw where he was clearly injured with his back. He couldn't run or jump, but still was one of our better players (we were getting destroyed by the dogs) just by walking to the correct spots and firing out handballs. Brave/stupid that he was anywhere near a footy oval.
 

Roobound

Club Legend
Aug 16, 2009
2,324
3,522
melbourne
AFL Club
North Melbourne
And if he does decide to the hang up the boots, it would be fantastic from the club to offer him a coaching role at some capacity, provided he is in right headspace and is healthy. He would be a mastermind during clearance/stoppage drills.

I could see Cunners as a Roy Kent (Ted Lasso) type of coach.

Best wishes & get well great man.
 

RossHenshaw

Club Legend
Sep 12, 2020
1,176
2,495
AFL Club
North Melbourne
I was just thinking today about the hole that will be left when Cunnington retires. With his future unknown, there is every chance he might not play again - of course, his health is a priority and I don't mean to distract from that, but I cant help but think about what a North side looks without him.

He doesn't do anything flashy, he is just a hard as nails and an elite decision maker and executor, not to mention throwing around 90kg+ opposition at will to make space for himself. He is more than the engine of the midfield - I can't quite find the right words to describe it, but I am sure all North fans who watch him week in week out understand and appreciate the unique impact he has on a game and the nuances of his skills that sets him apart from the many other star midfielders of the game.

He has got more appreciation/recognition externally over the last few years - but I truly don't think 90% of opposition fans really understand how good this guy is at football.

So I am just feeling sad over the fact that his time remaining in the game is quite limited if not potentially over (god forbid). Being 26, I really only have seen us play since the early-mid 2000's - the only other time I felt we would be left which a hole like this was when Boomer was walked out (F U Scott). Players like this are few and far between. We have had other great players in my time watching...Archer, Stevens, Simpson, Swallow, Goldstein....but their impending retirements never evoked this same feeling like it did with Harvey and now Cunnington.

Just wanted to share that.
9284F813-8138-49C5-B0F0-41BC4A0DA819.gif
 

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