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 Australian rules until he was 15, Whelan played three seasons for the Northern Territory's Teal Cup side, but was overlooked in both the 1997 and 1998 AFL drafts. He moved to the SANFL and played 19 games for Woodville-West Torrens in 1999. After finishing second in the Darwin competition's best and fairest despite only playing nine games he finally arrived on the radar of AFL clubs. North Melbourne showed interest, but Melbourne got in three picks before them.

Surprising even himself with how well he took to the game's top competition, Whelan played 16 games in 2000, before a neck injury in Round 19 cost him a chance to play finals. Whelan was picked for a Northern Territory side to play Port Adelaide in the 2001 pre-season, before achilles and quad injuries kept him out until Round 6. He only played nine games for the year and missed finals with injury again in 2002. Whelan's first final didn't come until 2004.

Whelan battled injury again 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 a tackle on Nathan Brown of Richmond that ended in a horrific break for Brown's leg. More injuries restricted him to just five games in 2007, and Whelan retired at the end of 2009. He joined Frankston club Pines for 2010, before returning to Melbourne as an Indigenous Project Officer in 2020.

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.

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, 30/01/2001, 27/05/2001
AFANA News - 2001
Hastings Leader - 27/10/2009

Australian Rules Football profile
Australian Rules Football Wiki profile
Demonwiki image gallery
Draftguru profile
melbfc.com.au profile - 2001
Wikipedia profile

Created by Supermercado. Last Modification: Tuesday 19 March 2024 16:09:16 AEDT by Supermercado. (Version 44)

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