'Good to see': AFL world erupts over new photo of Ben Cousins

Ben Cousins, pictured here posing for photos at a West Coast Eagles game.
Ben Cousins posed for photos with fans at a West Coast Eagles game. Image: Twitter

Ben Cousins has been spotted at a West Coast Eagles game as the fallen AFL star plots a return to footy.

The former premiership hero posed for photos with fans while watching West Coast take on Collingwood at Optus Stadium in Perth on Friday night.

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Cousins was sporting a cleaner look than we've seen previously, with short hair and no beard.

The 42-year-old hadn't been seen in public since he was released from jail in December after being convicted of stalking his ex-partner.

In a photo posted by a West Coast Eagles fan page, Cousins appears happy and healthy as he posed for snaps with fellow Eagles supporters.

The photos sparked hundreds of comments from AFL fans.

"With the champ," one photo was captioned.

Another said: "Good to see Ben looking happy and healthy."

And another added: "Glad to see him at the footy getting back to what he truly loves."

According to The West Australian, Cousins is panning a return to competitive footy in Perth’s local Metro Football League and has been training with Queens Park since December.

Cousins told the publication he'd like to play six to 10 games this year after he recovers from an ankle injury.

“It was just a rolled ankle at training so hopefully I can get back out there soon,” Cousins said.

“I’ve been training a couple of times a week.”

Ben Cousins, pictured here in action for West Coast in 2004.
Ben Cousins in action for West Coast in 2004. (Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images) (Getty Images)

Ben Cousins' shocking fall from grace

Cousins was convicted of stalking his ex-partner but acquitted by a Perth court of restraining order breaches last November.

Cousins had pleaded not guilty to the charges, including 20 counts of breaching a family violence restraining order relating to his ex-partner, Maylea Tinecheff, in April 2020.

The former West Coast Eagles captain spent more than six months behind bars before facing a two-day trial in Armadale Magistrates Court.

Magistrate Brian Mahon sentenced Cousins to seven months in prison but backdated it to his April 22 arrest.

Ben Cousins, pictured here leaving Fremantle Magistrates Court in 2017.
Ben Cousins leaves Fremantle Magistrates Court in 2017. (AAP Image/Richard Wainwright) (AAPIMAGE)

Ms Tinecheff said during the trial that Cousins had relentlessly tried to contact her and their two young children despite being prohibited from doing so.

Cousins has previously served almost a year behind bars for stalking Ms Tinecheff.

The 42-year-old has had well-documented issues with meth addiction and 22 convictions for VRO breaches, 20 of which resulted in a prison sentence.

The Brownlow Medal winner and six-time All Australian played 238 games for West Coast before he was axed in 2007 after he was arrested on drug-related charges.

He was banned by the AFL for 12 months for bringing the game into disrepute soon after he was dumped by the Eagles.

He went on to play 32 games in two years at Richmond before retiring at the age of 32 at the end of the 2010 season.

with AAP

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