Worsfold backs Cousins' AFL return - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Worsfold backs Cousins' AFL return

By Justin Chadwick 01/08/2008 05:35:31 PM Comments (0)

West Coast coach John Worsfold has thrown his support behind Ben Cousins' bid to return to the AFL - but only if the comeback helps his former pupil's rehabilitation from a drug addiction.

Cousins, who was sacked by the Eagles last year following his arrest in Northbridge, was spotted training at a local oval in Perth on Friday under the watchful eye of long-time fitness mentor and former WAFL great Murray Couper.

Worsfold said he would like to see Cousins return to AFL ranks but only if it was good for his health.

"Whatever's going to help him, if that's what he needs, then he should have a go at it," Worsfold said.

"He'll be a sensational player for someone."

Fremantle coach Mark Harvey wouldn't rule out recruiting Cousins to the Dockers but said it was an "unlikely" outcome.

"We haven't discussed it. That's where it's at," Harvey said.

"I think we've got two months to discuss it but more unlikely at this stage."

Cousins, who plans to train with WAFL clubs Perth and East Fremantle next week before possibly spending time with VFL club Port Melbourne later in the season, is currently serving a 12-month AFL suspension imposed on him last November for bringing the game into disrepute.

Cousins has declared he wants to resume his illustrious career, which is currently stalled at 238 games, but must first satisfy the AFL Commission that he is over the drug-related issues that led to his sacking from West Coast in the first place.

The 30-year-old recently met with independent doctors in Melbourne to get an assessment of his condition and is expected to front the AFL Commission in October.

"Everything I'm doing is about keeping that opportunity open," Cousins told the Nine Network on Thursday night.

"I think this next step (training with a club) is a big one, getting back into a club environment and back into a full routine.

"It will be nice to get back to training and to get back to grass roots and see how the body feels. It will be an important part of assessing where I'm at."

Worsfold said his door remained open should Cousins seek his counsel.

"I don't talk to Ben about football for his future, I talk to him about how he's going, and if he needs to talk to me or needs any advice from me he knows I'm there to talk to him," Worsfold said.

"That's the way it's been for the last 12 months."

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