Player Watch #10: Ben Cunnington

amaz199

Club Legend
Apr 5, 2015
2,955
5,703
AFL Club
North Melbourne
Gonna be one of those players that will feature in a montage for the fans to see once he retires. (Not like he hasn't already haha)

We will be sitting at Marvel, waiting for the game to start and the screens light up with Cunners fend offs and elite highlights.

Just so hard to tackle and so composed.

Geez we missed him so badly last season...
 

Val Keating

Brownlow Medallist
Dec 27, 2017
12,303
26,462
AFL Club
North Melbourne
Don't know why people are talking retirement so soon. The bloke just keeps going up a level. I wouldn't be surprised to see him still going in his mid thirties.
100/%. The way he plays he doesn’t rely on speed, he’s all smarts and strength. I reckon he’ll play deep into his 30’s if he wants.
 

AnEmptyChair

All Australian
Nov 12, 2020
779
2,662
AFL Club
North Melbourne
Don't know why people are talking retirement so soon. The bloke just keeps going up a level. I wouldn't be surprised to see him still going in his mid thirties.
An understatement to say that he doesn't rely on athleticism either. He'll play quality footy well into his 30s if he wants to. He'll call time on his own terms and when he thinks it's best for his family.
 

Billy Not Really

Norm Smith Medallist
Apr 7, 2018
5,131
11,952
Licking windows at the back of the bus.
AFL Club
North Melbourne
I think its a crime he isn't already heralded as one of the last true footballers in the game, he has the tools to do just about everything, but the game is so built around speed and endurance these days he sticks out as someone who seems so 'unconventional' in the eyes of the wider footy public.

But anyone who knows a thing or two about the game beyond the surface level knows this guy is as legit as they come, and if he were at any other club they'd either drop him for not being the typical AFL mold of player you see these days or championed as a great of the game.

Well, in my mind he is a great of the game, he's produced such good footy for so long and does everything you'd want in a footy player than even if he retires without a premiership medal, a norm smith, a brownlow or any other big wig accolades, he'll be remembered forever by North fans.
 

Horace

Premium Gold
Dec 2, 2001
10,482
18,941
Mitcham
AFL Club
North Melbourne
Other Teams
Fitzroy
Gonna be one of those players that will feature in a montage for the fans to see once he retires. (Not like he hasn't already haha)

We will be sitting at Marvel, waiting for the game to start and the screens light up with Cunners fend offs and elite highlights.

Just so hard to tackle and so composed.

Geez we missed him so badly last season...
We certainly did miss him. I will go further and say that had he not been injured, our season would have looked quite different. Probably still close to the bottom of the ladder, but maybe Rhys might still be coach and Higgo and BennyB still at the club.
 
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AnEmptyChair

All Australian
Nov 12, 2020
779
2,662
AFL Club
North Melbourne
I think its a crime he isn't already heralded as one of the last true footballers in the game, he has the tools to do just about everything, but the game is so built around speed and endurance these days he sticks out as someone who seems so 'unconventional' in the eyes of the wider footy public.

But anyone who knows a thing or two about the game beyond the surface level knows this guy is as legit as they come, and if he were at any other club they'd either drop him for not being the typical AFL mold of player you see these days or championed as a great of the game.

Well, in my mind he is a great of the game, he's produced such good footy for so long and does everything you'd want in a footy player than even if he retires without a premiership medal, a norm smith, a brownlow or any other big wig accolades, he'll be remembered forever by North fans.
Maybe among some sections of the media this is the case as he's not particularly flashy and his reticence to get in front of the camera doesn't bring in the eyeballs, but among his peers he's absolutely held in the highest regard. I remember Scott Pendlebury spoke on a podcast in 2019 saying that he thought he was the best inside mid in the comp and he spoke in glowing terms about how good he is.
 

Horace

Premium Gold
Dec 2, 2001
10,482
18,941
Mitcham
AFL Club
North Melbourne
Other Teams
Fitzroy
Maybe among some sections of the media this is the case as he's not particularly flashy and his reticence to get in front of the camera doesn't bring in the eyeballs, but among his peers he's absolutely held in the highest regard. I remember Scott Pendlebury spoke on a podcast in 2019 saying that he thought he was the best inside mid in the comp and he spoke in glowing terms about how good he is.
To add to that, every time Dermott Brereton commentates on our games, he is full of praise and admiration for Benny. I suspect that Benny might be one of Dermott's favourite players, because of the way he goes about it.
 

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