Ex-Hawthorns coaches Alastair Clarkson and Chris Fagan allegedly pressured Aboriginal player to abort his partner, club review finds: ‘He asked me to kill my unborn child’
The club has referred claims to the AFL’s integrity unit over claims Clarkson pressured the player to abort her child, parting ways with former Hawks assistant coach Chris Fagan.
Ex-Hawthorn coach Alastair Clarkson was part of a group of senior staff who allegedly asked an Aboriginal player to pressure his partner to terminate her pregnancy and went to great lengths to separate First Nations stars from their loved ones, a review commissioned by the club has revealed.
Among the staff involved in the allegations is Clarkson’s former assistant Chris Fagan, who is now coach of the Brisbane Lions, according to an ABC report.
The report claims the incidents occurred during the club’s golden run of success under Clarkson, when they won the 2008 grand final and three premierships from 2013-2015.
Clarkson (pictured celebrating Hawthorn’s 2014 premiership win with Luke Hodge) is alleged to have told an Aboriginal player to ask his partner to abort their child and divorce him.
It has also been claimed that Clarkson’s former assistant Chris Fagan – now coach of the Brisbane Lions – was a member of a group of senior Hawks figures who allegedly pressured the player to terminate her unborn child.
The most damning allegation in the report is that a player who was ‘delighted’ at the news of his partner’s pregnancy was urged by a group of coaches, including Clarkson and Fagan, to abort the child and break up with him.
‘Clarkson just leaned over me and demanded I get rid of my unborn child and partner,’ claimed the player, who has been named only as ‘Ian’ in the report.
‘I was then manipulated and persuaded to remove my SIM card from my phone so that there was no further contact between me and my family.
‘He told me to kill my unborn child.’
It’s alleged that Ian’s partner Amy was left devastated by the news.
‘She could barely get the words out and she seemed to be crying, and she quickly said we had to end the pregnancy and end the relationship,’ she said in the report.
Amy also claims the club cut her off from Ian – leaving her unable to call or text her for the first five months of her pregnancy, which affected her mental health.
An Aboriginal player named only ‘Ian’ claimed Clarkson (pictured) leaned on him and claimed he was ‘getting rid’ of the unborn child he was expecting with his partner.
‘I will never forget that phone call or the heartbreak I felt in that moment. I froze on the spot, completely numb to what Ian had just said.’
Hawthorn allegedly pressured other couples to separate early in their pregnancies or shortly after the birth of their children, the report said, adding that the two families were offered mental health support from the AFL Players Association.
It has also been claimed that the Hawks bullied First Nations players into choosing between their football careers and their families and forced them to leave their homes so they could relocate.
Clarkson’s (pictured earlier this month) incredible success with Hawthorn came after the club bullied Aboriginal players into severing relationships with their loved ones to focus solely on footy, it has been alleged.
It has been alleged that the coach forced at least two young players to remove the SIM cards from their phones to cut them off from their loved ones and force them to fully dedicate themselves to the team.
The review was given to Hawthorn management two weeks ago and the club released the following statement on Wednesday morning.
‘Earlier this year Hawthorn Football Club engaged external First Nations consultants to contact current and former First Nations players and staff to learn more about their experiences at the club.
‘This important work raises disturbing historical allegations that require further investigation. Upon learning of these allegations, the Club immediately engaged AFL Integrity as appropriate.’
More to come…