This year’s ceremony brings with it a case of back to the future as we return to Melbourne’s Crown Palladium for the count for the first time since 2019.
The ceremony has also been moved from its traditional Monday night slot due to the recent death of Queen Elizabeth II.
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Last year’s count saw Port Adelaide star Ollie Wines take out the medal with an equal-Brownlow record 36 votes ahead of Western Bulldogs captain Marcus Bontempelli.
The man who finished third in last year’s count, Melbourne’s Clayton Oliver, is one of the raging favourites after putting together another spectacular season.
Ahead of the AFL’s night of nights, here is everything you need to know in Wide World of Sports’ Brownlow Medal ultimate guide:
What is the Brownlow Medal?
Awarded every season since 1924, the Brownlow Medal is given to the best and fairest player during the AFL’s home and away season.
Where will the Brownlow ceremony be held?
This year’s Brownlow Medal ceremony will be held at Melbourne’s Crown Palladium.
When is the Brownlow Medal ceremony?
The 2022 Brownlow Medal Count will be held on Sunday September 18, with the event broadcasted nationally on the Seven Network commencing at 7pm AEST.
The evening will start with the Virgin Australia Runway at the Charles Brownlow Medal, where the game’s best players, AFL officials, and industry members will arrive from 6pm AEST.
How is the Brownlow Medal decided?
Umpires vote on a 3-2-1 basis after every match and the player with the most votes at the end of the regular season is crowned the winner.
Players who are suspended during the season are ineligible for the award, and players who finish on the same number of votes are declared joint winners.
Who are the favourites for this year’s Brownlow Medal?
Where will this year’s Brownlow likely be won?
Every year we see the Brownlow Medal winner have a stretch of games that puts some space between them and the rest of the pack. For the top three favourites, here’s where we think they could stake their respective claims.
Lachie Neale (Rounds 1-9) – 32.1 disposals per game, team had 8-1 record in that period
If there was any doubt over Lachie Neale’s commitment to Brisbane after he briefly flirted with a return to Fremantle over the summer, the 2020 Brownlow winner put that to bed right from the outset.
Neale was at the centre of Brisbane’s scintillating start to the season, amassing 32.1 disposals per game as the Lions raced out to an impressive 8-1 start after nine rounds.
He enjoyed a number of signature games throughout this stretch, but a 41-disposal, two-goal, 12-clearance outing against Essendon in round two takes the cake.
Neale will feature right at the top of the leaderboard from the opening stages of the count.
Clayton Oliver (Rounds 6-16) – 36.5 disposals per game, team had 7-3 record in that period
Melbourne’s Clayton Oliver has shown himself to be a prolific ball-winner since the moment he entered the league, and he found the footy at will all year long, averaging a career-high 32.7 touches per game.
However, it was during a 10-game stretch in the middle of the season where the 25-year-old really put the team on his back, averaging a stupendous 36.5 touches per game in that period.
Oliver eclipsed the 40-disposal mark four times this year, with two of the performances coming within this stretch, highlighted by a 45-disposal, 13-clearance masterpiece against the Kangaroos in round 13.
What could also prove crucial is Oliver’s ability to poll in matches Melbourne lost, with the Demons star turning in some monster games in losing efforts.
Patrick Cripps (Rounds 1-3 & 6-8) – 33 disposals per game, team had 5-1 record across those periods
The Carlton captain shrugged off concerns that he might’ve been past his best football with a stunning start to the season.
Cripps tallied over 30 disposals in six of his first seven matches, with the only outlier in round four when he was subbed out at quarter-time against the Suns.
Like Neale, Cripps is likely to be right up near the top of the leaderboard through the first half of the season, before sliding out of contention due to a rough patch in the middle of the year.
While Carlton’s finals hopes floundered in the final month, Cripps came home with a wet sail and could be a fast finisher if he’s able to stay in contact with the leaders.
Recent Brownlow Medal winners
2021 – Ollie Wines (Port Adelaide)
2020 – Lachie Neale (Brisbane Lions)
2019 – Nat Fyfe (Fremantle)
2018 – Tom Mitchell (Hawthorn)
2017 – Dustin Martin (Richmond)
2016 – Patrick Dangerfield (Geelong)
2015 – Nat Fyfe (Fremantle)
Who has won the most Brownlow Medals?
Four players are tied having won three Brownlow Medals:
Haydn Bunton Sr (Fitzroy) – 1931, 1932, 1935
Dick Reynolds (Essendon) – 1934, 1937, 1938
Bob Skilton (South Melbourne) – 1959, 1963, 1968
Ian Stewart (St Kilda/Richmond) – 1965, 1966, 1971
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