Saints board to look at snaring Cousins - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Saints board to look at snaring Cousins

09/10/2008 03:00:41 PM Comments (0)

St Kilda's board will discuss the possible drafting of former West Coast skipper Ben Cousins at a meeting next week.

Saints board member Nathan Burke said the club had been monitoring Cousins' efforts to convince the AFL he has recovered from drug addiction to a sufficient extent to resume his football career.

The 238-game premiership star has been serving a 12-month ban since last November for bringing the game into disrepute.

The AFL Commission is expected to make a decision by mid-November on whether to allow the 30-year-old to return and if so under what conditions.

"We do have to wait and find out exactly what the AFL are going to do," Burke told Melbourne radio station SEN.

"They haven't made up their minds just yet so that may pre-empt everything that we've got in place.

"We've got a board meeting next Thursday night and I dare say it may come up as a topic there.

"The thing that is in our favour, obviously, is that the pre-season draft doesn't take place until December this year, so there's a lot of water to go under the bridge between now and then - a lot of checks, a lot of (rubber) stamping by the AFL.

"We'll just go through that process and see what comes out at the end of it, but I'm sure it will be discussed next Thursday night."

The commission is expected to discuss the case at a meeting on Monday, as a precursor to making their decision.

Burke said the conditions placed on Cousins' return would be an important consideration for the Saints.

"Obviously if you do get a player like Ben and the AFL say 'He's got his (two) strikes, one more and he's out' what does that do with our investment in him as a player?" he said.

"That's where the homework and the due diligence around his mental state and his state of health at the time will come into play."

Collingwood are still the favourites to sign the Brownlow Medallist.

Coach Mick Malthouse, who previously coached Cousins at the Eagles, and Magpies football manager Geoff Walsh met him in Perth last month.

If Cousins is to make a comeback, he will have to nominate for either the November 29 national draft or more likely the December 16 pre-season draft.

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