Brendan Fevola reveals private meeting with Ben Cousins

Brendan Fevola has for the first time revealed the private moment he shared with Ben Cousins when they were at their rock bottom.

Fevola on Wednesday met with Cousins for an interview on the Carlton great’s radio show where the pair opened up about an impromptu meeting where the West Coast legend showed behaviour that worried his friend.

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Cousins has pieced his life back together in recent years and is featuring in this year’s season of Channel 7’s Dancing With The Stars.

The 46-year-old looks fit and healthy again after personal issues and a widely publicised substance addiction left his life in tatters following his football retirement.

Cousins spent time in prison after being found guilty of stalking his ex-partner Maylea Tinecheff — the mother of the pair’s two children — in 2020.

Earlier, in 2018, Cousins also served 10 months of a 12-month prison sentence for stalking Tinechef.

The Brownlow Medallist and premiership player was sacked by the Eagles in 2007 after he was arrested for drug possession and handed a 12-month suspension by the AFL.

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He spent two more years with Richmond playing top-level footy before retiring at the end of the 2010 season.

Fevola’s footy career also ended at the end of the 2010 season when he was sacked by the Brisbane Lions with a full year running on his contract.

Fevola, who was last month inducted into the Carlton Hall of Fame, left the Blues in 2009 amid a slew of off-field issues, including gambling problems.

Fevola, 43, has now shared details about the night the pair crossed paths following former Richmond captain Chris Newman’s engagement party with partner Lauren Poulter.

Newman and Poulter celebrated their engagement in March, 2011.

Fevola on Wednesday said he and Cousins only bumped into each other at the end of the night.

According to reports at the time, Fevola was sporting a black eye and stitches and was heard telling people it happened in a training accident.

Fevola on Wednesday said he “wasn’t going too well” at the time, but was still much more worried about Cousins.

“We know each other. We know each other very well,” Fevola said to Cousins on his FOX101.9 Fifi, Fev & Nick breakfast show.

“I’ve never told this story in public, There was a night after one of my best mate’s engagement party, (former Richmond captain) Chris Newman, and you were down from Perth, and we were at Crown (Casino).

“I was not there with Ben, but I was going upstairs to stay at Crown, and Ben hopped in the lift. I was like, ‘G’day mate, how are you going?’, and something had happened with your rental car, and you couldn’t get to the airport, you’d missed your plane, and you said, ‘can I stay with you tonight?’”

“So, we went up to our room on the 33rd floor. You had a couple of phones. You kept taking the battery out, and then you’re charging the battery. I’m like, ‘Are you alright mate?’ and he’s like, ‘I just don’t know.’

“And we sat there all night, and I didn’t go to sleep because I was a bit worried about Ben. And we sat and chatted for about seven hours until you left the next morning.

“We got in deep to some stuff. And I couldn’t believe how worried I was about you. You worried about me. Two cooked units sitting there, chewing the fat, talking about life. How did you turn it around?”

Cousins responded: “It’s hard to put it down to one thing. Unfortunately, when I think about it now, I do wish that it didn’t have to run its course the way it did.

“It wasn’t through lack of wanting to turn it around at times, but it’s just, it’s just a complicated thing. But I do remember that night (at Crown) fondly. We’ve always had a good time when we’ve caught up, but I wasn’t going too well at that time.”

Fevola said he called to check in on Cousins multiple times per month after the meeting.

In recent years, Cousins has made a significant personal recovery, locking down multiple media roles with Channel 7 and Mix94.5 in Perth.

The AFL has acknowledged Cousins’ improved circumstances, with AFL commission chair Richard Goyder hinting at a potential future induction into the sport’s Hall of Fame.

Fevola has also spoken publicly about his own personal issues and has been widely praised for helping others battle similar issues.

One of the AFL’s last great larrikins and a showman, Fevola booted 575 goals in his 187 games at Carlton after being taken at pick 38 in the 1998 draft, NCA NewsWire reports.

A fan favourite, he was a two-time Coleman Medal winner as the AFL’s leading goalkicker in 2006 and 2009, an award he won at his club seven consecutive times from 2003 to 2009.

Fevola famously admitted to selling his prized Coleman Medal (awarded to the AFL’s leading goalkicker) to fund his gambling addiction.

He said recently he blew millions of dollars living as a “bogan”.

The star footballer has spoken openly about the downwards spiral he went through towards the end of his football career, including a stint in rehab and declaring bankruptcy in 2013.

Wife Alex left him at the time, but the couple are now a happy family with daughters Leni, Lulu, Tobi and Mia.