Shane Warne, Anthony Mundine, Jason Akermanis and Nick Kyrgios are polarising individuals.
Shane Warne, Anthony Mundine, Jason Akermanis and Nick Kyrgios are polarising individuals.

Australia’s most polarising sportspeople

Big O counts down Australia's most polarising sportspeople since 1980.

15. WILLIE MASON: Fans grew tired of his boorish behaviour - the likes of urinating in public, impersonating a teammate's signature and jumping a taxi.

14. WARWICK CAPPER: His flamboyance, arrogance and at times overzealous behaviour wasn't well received through the eighties.

13. WAYNE CAREY: From an affair with a teammate's wife to drug-fuelled rampages and alleged domestic violence, it's little wonder he has lost a lot of admirers.

12. LLEYTON HEWITT: Especially when he was world No.1, fans struggled to warm to his on-court abuse of officials - in 2000 he infamously called Australian crowds "stupid".

11. PAUL GALLEN: From berating Queenslanders to the ASADA drug scandal, the former rugby league player-turned-boxer has earned the ire from both sides of the border.

 

Paul Gallen put plenty off-side during his career.
Paul Gallen put plenty off-side during his career.

 

10. ROBERT ALLENBY: The Jekyll and Hyde of golf has sacked more caddies than any other Australian golfer in the sport's history.

9. MARK JACKSON: Often referred to as a lunatic in charge of a mouthpiece, Jacko's on-field indiscretions were legendary.

8. WALLY LEWIS: Despised by NSW fans, he remains the only Australian captain to be booed on to the field as he led his country during a Test in 1984.

 

Jason Akermanis is never short of a word.
Jason Akermanis is never short of a word.

 

7. JASON AKERMANIS: The AFL star holds controversial views on drugs and homosexuals - he says they should stay in the closet - and he was sacked from his radio show for making derogatory comments about the late Jim Stynes.

6. SHANE WARNE: Extravagant lifestyle and sexual conquests have been the envy and angst of many, while his endless berating of Steve Waugh hasn't endeared him to the public.

 

Shane Warne is never far from controversy.
Shane Warne is never far from controversy.

 

5. DAVID WARNER: Copped the brunt after the 2018 sandpaper scandal in South Africa and his deplorable Ashes form divided opinion.

4. BERNARD TOMIC: A perceived lack of heart, which has seen him quit mid-match more times than anybody else, has infuriated fans for almost a decade.

3. MICHAEL CLARKE: Fast cars, model girlfriends, sleeve tattoos and feuds with teammates are not the traditional traits associated with Test cricket captains.

 

Nick Kyrgios is known for his on-court tantrums. Picture: Mark Stewart
Nick Kyrgios is known for his on-court tantrums. Picture: Mark Stewart

2. NICK KYRGIOS: He's argued with fans, abused officials, tanked matches, smashed racquets and thrown chairs - but his bushfire-fundraising heroics has the public back on side.

1. ANTHONY MUNDINE: His criticism of Brad Fittler and Laurie Daley, insensitive comments around 9/11, coupled with his outlandish boasting of his ability, has riled sports fans across the nation.

 

 

 

 

 

Originally published as Australia's most polarising sportspeople


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