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Arguably one of the most underrated midfielders of his generation, Ben Cunnington’s contested work at stoppages is a thing of beauty, with the veteran seemingly creating time and space out of thin air with his iconic fend-off.

Finishing in the top two of the Syd Barker Medal in four of the last five years, his consistency to maintain his game at the top level is nothing short of astounding.

North’s first top five selection since Daniel Wells in 2002, Cunnington took some time to adapt to senior football, struggling to alter his contested and physical style of play against fully grown men.

Since he found his feet though, Cunnington has been one of the most important on-field contributors to North Melbourne over the course of his decade at the top level, and one of the most iconic players of the modern era to pull on the royal blue and white.

North Melbourne debut: Round 5, 2010
Career Brownlow votes: 71

2021: After missing most of the 2020 season with a back injury, Cunnington’s return to the North side was delayed by a concussion suffered in pre-season.

Making his return in Round 3, he would play 15 games for the year before the removal of a testicular tumour cut his campaign short.

Finishing the season with the Mazda Excellence Award, a second-place finish in the Syd Barker Medal, and 15 Brownlow votes, Cunnington put together one of the most complete campaigns of his career, despite missing seven games.

He proved to be an integral part of each of North’s wins over the course of the season, from kicking a crucial goal against the Eagles, to his immense 37 disposals and 13 clearances against Hawthorn.

As a player who never relied on express pace or elite athleticism, Cunnington seems to be continuing to improve with age, and hopefully he can pull a full campaign together in 2022.
Ben Cunnington
Arguably one of the most underrated midfielders of his generation, Ben Cunnington’s contested work at stoppages is a thing of beauty, with the veteran seemingly creating time and space out of thin air with his iconic fend-off.

Finishing in the top two of the Syd Barker Medal in four of the last five years, his consistency to maintain his game at the top level is nothing short of astounding.

North’s first top five selection since Daniel Wells in 2002, Cunnington took some time to adapt to senior football, struggling to alter his contested and physical style of play against fully grown men.

Since he found his feet though, Cunnington has been one of the most important on-field contributors to North Melbourne over the course of his decade at the top level, and one of the most iconic players of the modern era to pull on the royal blue and white.

North Melbourne debut: Round 5, 2010
Career Brownlow votes: 71

2021: After missing most of the 2020 season with a back injury, Cunnington’s return to the North side was delayed by a concussion suffered in pre-season.

Making his return in Round 3, he would play 15 games for the year before the removal of a testicular tumour cut his campaign short.

Finishing the season with the Mazda Excellence Award, a second-place finish in the Syd Barker Medal, and 15 Brownlow votes, Cunnington put together one of the most complete campaigns of his career, despite missing seven games.

He proved to be an integral part of each of North’s wins over the course of the season, from kicking a crucial goal against the Eagles, to his immense 37 disposals and 13 clearances against Hawthorn.

As a player who never relied on express pace or elite athleticism, Cunnington seems to be continuing to improve with age, and hopefully he can pull a full campaign together in 2022.
Total Games -
Total Goals -
DOB -
Debut -
Draft -
Brownlow Votes 0
Recruited From -
Syd Barker Medal Winner
Years award won:
2014, 2019
Syd Barker Medal Runner-Up
Years award won:
2015, 2017, 2018, 2021
Mazda Excellence Award
Years award won:
2021
All-Australian Nominee
Years award won:
2019
Benchmarking   Explained
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