AFL

Ben Cousins returns to West Coast Eagles to support son of Chris Mainwaring

West Coast's prodigal son Ben Cousins is not taking on any kind of permanent role with his former club - but recently returned to the fold to support the child of another former Eagles favourite, the late Chris Mainwaring.

Social media clicked into overdrive in late January, when star Eagles ruckman Nic Naitanui posted a photo to his 62,000-plus Instagram followers of a fit and healthy looking Cousins in West Coast gear.

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Seven News Perth to reveal details of Ben Cousins Eagles return

Seven News Perth has promised to reveal full details of Ben Cousins' return to the West Coast Eagles at 6pm Monday.

At the time, West Coast said there was nothing unusual in Cousins' visit and that he regularly popped in to club headquarters.

But WAtoday understands Eagles officials were surprised to see the 2005 Brownlow medallist and that the visit coincided with a West Coast father-son day.

While Cousins' eldest child Bobby only turned four in September, it is believed the six-time All-Australian was there to support Zac Mainwaring, the teenage son of ex-Eagles wingman Chris.

Seven News Perth says it will tell the full story of Cousins' return in Monday's 6pm bulletin.

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Recovering drug addict Cousins and Mainwaring were famously close until the latter's drug-related death in 2007.

Cousins wrote in his 2010 book My Life Story of visiting a "struggling" Mainwaring on the night of his death and was later a pallbearer at his funeral.

A much younger Zac Mainwaring was in the public eye in 2008, kicking a goal in a tribute match for his father.

Cousins, 37,  played 238 games for the Eagles but was deregistered by the AFL for the whole of the 2008 season because of his addiction problems.

He made a comeback to the Tigers in 2009 and played 32 games for Richmond over two years.

Cousins faced a series of legal issues last year, including a "low-speed car chase" in Perth, which he pleaded guilty to. At the time his lawyer said his client had ongoing treatment and had been working on fencing in Collie.

- Simon White

 

N I N E

A photo posted by realnaitanui (@realnaitanui) on

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