Almanac Book Cover 2016: The Case for Whitecross


Drafted in 2007, Hawthorn defender Brendan Whitecross made his debut for the brown and gold in Round 1 of 2009, the game following the Hawks’ surprise Premiership win over Geelong in 2008.

He’d made his name as a footballer in Brisbane’s northern suburbs, first for Kedron and then with Zillmere, both proud Queensland footy clubs with rich histories to match.

By 2011, Brendan Whitecross had firmly established himself as one of Hawthorn’s best 22. His sure hands, ability to apply pressure, his capacity to find the ball and be a link-up option going forward made him a reliable and effective contributor. He was part of that team pipped at the post by Collingwood in the 2011 preliminary final.

The Pies would become a bogey side with Whitecross rupturing the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee against Collingwood in the 2012 qualifying final, requiring a reconstruction. The same knee burst for a second time against Geelong in the 2013 Preliminary final (an absolute classic). His injury meant he missed both the 2013 and 2014 premierships.

In 2015, at Box Hill, Whitecross fought to make his way back into the Hawthorn line-up, but time did not side with him while the Hawks found a way to a third successive premiership.

Since first considering his options and then fighting his way back into Hawthorn’s senior side more than halfway into season 2016, Whitecross has been one of the club’s most reliable. He’s played seven games this year and has forged his spot in the finals team, a place cemented with his desperate save of a nearly-goal from Collingwood in Round 23, which would have knocked the Hawks out of the four and perhaps out of contention for a fourth flag on the trot.

Almost ten seasons at a club while observing four premierships from up in the stands would be a difficult journey. If ‘Whitey’ and his side get through to the 2016 Grand Final and pull off what the rest of the footy world consider the unthinkable, expect the loudest cheer for number 11 when the players receive their medallions.

Brendan Whitecross with a premiership to his name. That would make for a nice Almanac cover.



Other nominations including Pav, Bob Murphy, Swanny and the Adelaide Oval here.



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  1. Menzel’s story is similar but more compelling. But not a bad call Sasha.

    Now seeing Menzel with a premiership medallion would be brilliant.

  2. Dan Menzel?

  3. Nope. (Soz Sasha)

  4. Daniel Flesch says

    Thanks , Sasha .Have been a fan of Whitey / White X for a while . A real team player / clubman.
    So impressed with his attitude throughout his trials. Even so , they might not select him for the finals if they go for the speed of Hartung (himself unlucky last year ) and Langford. Much as i’d like it , can’t see the Hawks winning this year’s Flag anyway.

  5. Oops, beat me to the punch, Dips!

  6. Menzel an equally good story. This Friday night may give us an indication of who is most likely.

  7. Or, maybe a front cover and a back cover. A premiership player on the front and another worthy subject on the back (e.g. Boomer, Swanny, Dangerfield (they won’t win the flag), based on votes submitted by Almanackers.

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