Sam Kekovich: AFL great goes rogue mid-interview to criticize The Voice after being asked about Ron Barassi
- Sam Kekovich criticizes The Voice
- Advertising leader Lamb goes rogue
- READ MORE: AFL Voice snobbery
Former football great and Australian Lamb ambassador Sam Kekovich has unexpectedly used the death of AFL legend Ron Barassi to take a crude swipe at the Indigenous Voice in Parliament referendum.
The political shift came as Kekovich was interviewed about his memories of being coached by Barassi in the North Melbourne teams of 1975 and 1977 that won the club its first two premierships.
Barassi, who won an extraordinary 13 premierships as a player and manager, died on Saturday aged 87.
Kekovich, who has become a cult figure for leading the annual Australia Day advertising campaigns to eat more lamb, was asked about the suggestion that the AFL premiership cup be named after Barassi.
“I’ve been asked this question many times, it’s probably a no-brainer, but is it important enough? A big enough recognition? Kekovich replied.
“I think you could rename the country in honor of Barassi.
“You know they want to change the course of our history. Well why not screw it up and name Australia Barassi Country.
“I think it would be unanimous. We wouldn’t need a referendum, I can guarantee you that.
“I don’t know what more you can do, but a premiership cup is certainly appropriate.
‘Nothing else? I don’t know, but whatever you do, please don’t ask the politicians of this country.
Although the AFL officially supported Voice, it decided not to do any official campaigning on the issue during the final season.
The move is said to have disappointed government officials who were hoping for an extra boost for the Yes camp as the October 14 referendum date approaches.
A range of ideas to promote the Voice during the final were reportedly discussed, including a boundary ad and a recitation.
The Voice campaign has garnered support from several high-profile current and former AFL players, including retired Essendon great Michael Long.
He undertook a walk from Melbourne to Canberra to build support for The Voice, and said this week he would also petition King Charles.
The Voice campaign has been supported by a number of sporting bodies, including the AFL and NRL.
Kekovich became a cult figure leading the annual Australia Day advertising campaigns for lamb.
A number of other Indigenous AFL champions, such as Eddie Betts and Adam Goodes, have also trumpeted their support for The Voice.
Geelong controversy magnet Sam Newman is one of the few AFL identities to have spoken out against the proposal.
Opposition Leader Peter Dutton has criticized the AFL and NRL for their public support of the Yes campaign.
“Their fans are really wondering why the sporting elites are taking a stand on The Voice,” Mr Dutton said.