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Ellyse Perry, Nat Fyfe, Ben Cousins top most read sport stories in 2021

From WA winning the right to host our first-ever AFL grand final to Australia’s remarkable Tokyo Olympics success… there were plenty of big sporting moments this year.

See what made our most-read sport stories for 2021.

The most-read sport stories for 2021

1. Ellyse Perry spotted in Fremantle change rooms for Nat Fyfe’s 200th game

There was a surprise sporting star in Fremantle’s change rooms in Tasmania for Nat Fyfe’s milestone match.

Australian cricket superstar Ellyse Perry’s presence only added fuel to rumours the duo are dating, after Fyfe’s split with his girlfriend.

Perry was caught on camera in the rooms laughing and chatting to around half a dozen friends and family of the two-time Brownlow medallist, before Fyfe made a beeline for her.

Fyfe would later be seen at multiple cricket matches featuring Perry around the country.

2. Damien Hardwick’s new partner revealed

News that Damien Hardwick had separated from his beloved “Mrs Hardwick”, as he affectionately dubbed her in press conferences, shocked the AFL community.

What was more shocking was the revelation Hardwick had already moved on to a relationship with a younger staff member from the Richmond Football Club.

The club would go on to give the relationship a tick of approval under its human resources policy.

Richmond Tigers coach Damien Hardwick with ex-wife Danielle, AFL chief executive Gillon McLachlan (top right) and Hardwick's new girlfriend Alexandra Crow (bottom right).
Camera IconRichmond Tigers coach Damien Hardwick with ex-wife Danielle, AFL chief executive Gillon McLachlan (top right) and Hardwick’s new girlfriend Alexandra Crow (bottom right). Credit: Supplied

3. Tensions boil as Richmond coach confirms new relationship with young staffer

With Danielle Hardwick a beloved member of the Richmond community, and good friends with skipper Trent Cotchin and his family, news the Hardwicks were going their separate ways was sure to create some cracks.

But when news emerged Hardwick had moved on with a younger staff member from the club, tensions were reportedly high within the club confines.

The issue is even understood to have been raised among members of the board, before the all-clear was given on the relationship.

4. Ben Cousins shines in Brownlow Medal red carpet return

Ben Cousins and his date Kelley Fergus at the Brownlow Medal count.
Camera IconBen Cousins and his date Kelley Fergus at the Brownlow Medal count. Credit: Matt Jelonek/The West Australian

All eyes were on fallen Eagles star Ben Cousins when he walked the Brownlow Medal red carpet for the first time since his jail stint.

But the Brownlow Medallist wasn’t alone, bringing FIFO worker Kelley Fergus along for the glitzy event.

Fergus stunned in a slinky red gown, but it was Cousins who stole the show in his return to the public eye.

5. Former Scorcher lashes Heritier Lumumba over Eddie’s exit

When Eddie McGuire walked away from his beloved post as Collingwood president after a racism storm, a former Perth Scorcher and Australian representative didn’t take too kindly to the news.

James Muirhead took to social media to vent over McGuire’s exit, blaming former Pie Heritier Lumumba.

“I’m over good people who have put in so much, be disrespected in such way,” Muirhead posted.

6. Eddie McGuire denied entry in to WA

Eddie Everywhere became Eddie Nowhere in WA… and he didn’t take the news well.

Ben Cousins was a happy onlooker at Kelmscott.
Camera IconBen Cousins was a happy onlooker at Kelmscott. Credit: Nic Ellis/The West Australian

After being spotted partying with his sons before the 2020 AFL Grand Final in Queensland, Eddie attempted to enter WA to witness the 2021 AFL Grand Final.

But unlike Queensland, WA refuse to stamp McGuire’s papers and as a result, he missed watching the grand final live.

Safe to say he didn’t take the news well.

7. Ben Cousins cuts casual figure as Metro Football League match

Ex-Eagle Ben Cousins headed out to Kelmscott to watch his new team Queens Park kick off their Metro Football League defence.

Unfortunately for Cousins, he was sidelined by an ankle injury, but just his presence drew a big crowd.

Cousins happily posed for photos and spoke to fans in the biggest sign yet he’s turned his life around.

8. Premiership skipper Max Gawn got celebratory tattoo

Max Gawn shares his new ink.
Camera IconMax Gawn shares his new ink. Credit: Instagram/Instagram / sheridizzleyo

The ink was barely dry in the AFL record books when Melbourne premiership skipper Max Gawn got some ink of his own.

Funnily enough, Gawn got a mountain range, in no particular tribute to his history-making grand final success.

Gawn ended up being just one of many Melbourne premiership players to get tattoos in the post-premiership win celebrations.

9. Ben Cousins back to celebrate with Queens Park Bulldogs

A jubilant Ben Cousins may have only managed one full game for the Queens Park Bulldogs in season 2021, but he got around the boys when they claimed their crown.

Bringing his children to watch the grand final, Cousins cut a happy, casual figure in the crowd.

He even made his way onto the field for the post-game celebrations, and did kick-to-kick with local kids during the half-time break.

10. Kane Cornes slams Richmond’s Marvel Stadium complaint

Footy commentator Kane Cornes didn’t take too kindly to Richmond “sooking it up” over having to play at Marvel Stadium, instead of their home MCG.

After CEO Brendon Gale complained the venue “minimised fans”, Cornes slammed the comments as an “absolute joke”.

Cornes – 1 Richmond – 0.

Richmond CEO Brendon Gale with Tigers coach Damien Hardwick.
Camera IconRichmond CEO Brendon Gale with Tigers coach Damien Hardwick. Credit: Michael Willson/AFL Photos

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