Matthew Whelan

Image DOB: 13 November 1979

Debut: Round 4, 2000 against St. Kilda at MCG
Last Game: Round 22, 2009 against St. Kilda at MCG

From: Darwin/Woodville-West Torrens, Selection 50, 1999 National Draft

Number: 45 (2000-2009)

Best First Year Player - 2000
Rising Star nominee - Round 15, 2000 vs Hawthorn
Life Member - 2009

Games: 150
Goals: 15
Career Statistics

WinsDrawsLossesWinning %

Statistical categories led:
Most games in jumper 45

A junior rugby league player who didn't switch to AFL until he was 15, Whelan played three seasons in the NT Teal Cup side but was overlooked in both the 1997 and 1998 drafts before moving to the SANFL. A courageous player on the field, Whelan jokingly credited this trait to the time when as a child he had been walking across what he thought was a log, but which turned out to be a crocodile.

He played 19 games for Woodville-West Torrens in 1999 but remained under the radar until finishing second in the Best and Fairest of the Darwin competition despite only playing nine games. North Melbourne then began showing interest but Melbourne got in first to draft him three picks before the Kangaroos.

Having surprised everybody, including himself, with the way he stepped in senior football Whelan suffered a neck injury in Round 19 of his debut season and missed the finals series. In the 2001 pre-season he hurt both his quad and achilles and had a delayed start to the year, not appearing until round 6 and eventually only playing nine games for the year.

Back in action for 2002 he missed a second finals series with injury, and it would not be until the 2004 Elimination Final loss to Essendon - his fifth season - that Whelan would finally play finals football.

Whelan battled injury in 2005, suffering hamstring, hand and calf problems throughout the year. In Round 10 he was on the other end of an injury when he infamously laid the tackle on Richmond's Nathan Brown which horrifically broke Brown's leg.

Further injury problems relegated to him just five games in 2007, and Whelan retired from AFL football at the end of 2009 when it became clear that he was no longer part of Melbourne's plans.

He joined Frankston club Pines for 2010, joining Melbourne as an Indigenous Project Officer in 2020.

2000 1600
2001 910
2002 2130
2003 2241
2004 2010
2005 1610
2006 1930
2007 500
2008 1210
2009 1010
Tribunal Record
Round 16, 2000 Wrestling $1200 fine
Round 16, 2003 Unduly Rough Play Not Guilty
Round 18, 2005 Rough Conduct 1 match
Round 16, 2006 Melee $1500 fine
Round 5, 2007 Striking 1 match

Indigenous Players
Interstate recruits
Life Members

Herald Sun - 04/07/2000
Herald Sun - 27/05/2001
AFANA News 2001
Hastings Leader - 27/10/2009

Australian Rules Football profile
melbfc.com.au profile - 2001
Wikipedia profile

Created by Supermercado. Last Modification: Thursday 22 April 2021 03:09:10 AEST by Supermercado. (Version 40)

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