Simon Beasley
Personal information
Full name Simon Francis Beasley
Date of birth (1956-07-26) 26 July 1956 (age 65)
Original team(s) University (WAAFL)
Debut Round 1, 1982, Footscray
vs. Essendon, at Windy Hill
Height 195 cm (6 ft 5 in)
Weight 102 kg (225 lb)
Playing career1
Years Club Games (Goals)
1978–1981 Swan Districts 080 (292)
1982–1989 Footscray 154 (575)
Total 234 (867)
Representative team honours
Years Team Games (Goals)
1981–1985 Western Australia 4 (9)
1 Playing statistics correct to the end of 1989.
Career highlights
Sources: AFL Tables, AustralianFootball.com

Simon Francis Beasley (born 26 July 1956) is a former Australian rules footballer who played for the Swan Districts Football Club in the West Australian Football League (WAFL) and for the Footscray Football Club in the Victorian Football League (VFL).

A pale and slightly-built full forward, Beasley is the Western Bulldogs' leading career goalkicker and also holds the record for kicking the most goals in the VFL between the years 1980 to 1989. He is also one of two footballers (the other being George Moloney) to have kicked 100 or more goals in a season in both the WAFL and VFL/AFL competitions.

Beasley worked as a stockbroker for various firms during and after his playing days. In 2002, he became a licensed bookmaker and started his own company, which ceased after he was banned in 2009 for improper conduct. Beasley returned to bookmaking in 2018 as director of the company BEAZABET.

Early career

Beasley grew up in Western Australia and attended Guildford Grammar School. He then studied at the University of Western Australia, from where he graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce. During his university days, Beasley played football for the University Club in the then Western Australian Amateur Football League before joining Swan Districts in 1978. He soon established himself as a full forward of note, tying for the 1980 Bernie Naylor Medal with Warren Ralph, eventually finishing the season with 97 goals.

1981 was a special season individually for Beasley, kicking over 100 goals for the first time and finishing the season with 119 goals, second behind Ralph. He also won the Simpson Medal for his six-goal performance in the State of Origin clash against Victoria. During this period, a number of fellow West Australian footballers were moving across the Nullarbor to try their luck in the VFL, and it seemed certain Beasley would do the same.

Playing career at Footscray

Beasley moved to Melbourne at the end of 1981 and found work with as a stockbroker with Randall & Co, and signed with Footscray in the VFL. He made his senior debut in the opening round of the 1982 VFL season against Essendon at Windy Hill. Beasley had a forgettable day, barely touching the ball and getting hit in the face by Essendon enforcer Ron Andrews.[1] The Bulldogs lost by 109 points, and would eventually end up taking out the wooden spoon. However, Beasley did not take long to establish himself as a prominent full-forward, kicking 12 goals against Geelong in Round 16 and ending his debut season with a very respectable 82 goals in an under-performing side, finishing second only behind North Melbourne’s leading goal kicker Malcolm Blight.

From there, Footscray gradually began to rebuild, first by luring Carlton administrator Shane O'Sullivan as general manager in October 1982 and then in 1983 fielding up to 15 new players,[2] including fellow Western Australian Andrew Purser and future club stalwarts Stephen Wallis, Brian Royal and Peter Foster. The Bulldogs' performances improved dramatically; although they still suffered the odd thrashing (with 100+ point losses to Essendon and North Melbourne) they were sitting in fifth at the end of Round 12, and after falling to ninth by Round 20, finished the season strongly to end in seventh place on the ladder with ten wins. From an individual perspective, Beasley was unable to match his previous season's goal tally, finishing with 69 majors from 20 games, but was nonetheless consistent, with his best effort being a seven-goal haul against Fitzroy in Round 9 at VFL Park, and three games where he kicked six goals.

The unexpected resignation of popular former player and coach Ian Hampshire in January 1984 (presumably over a pay dispute as the club's financial woes were well-known at the time) heralded the arrival of recently retired Richmond defender Mick Malthouse, who would begin a coaching career that would eventually span over three decades. The Bulldogs again finished seventh on the ladder in 1984, this time with 11 wins. Beasley began the season in spectacular fashion, with hauls of 11 against Richmond in Round 1, eight against Geelong in Round 2, and five against North Melbourne in Round 3. But almost just as quickly his form fell away, being held goalless against Hawthorn and Fitzroy.

In 1985, the Bulldogs rose up the ladder, finishing in second place at the end of the home-and-away season before losing to Hawthorn in the Preliminary Final. Beasley played a key role, taking out the Coleman Medal with 93 goals during the home-and-away season, his personal best. He reached the century mark with a seven-goal performance in the First Semi-Final against North Melbourne and ended the season with 105 goals, becoming only the second Bulldog after Kelvin Templeton to kick 100 goals in a season.

The following year his career was affected by a dispute with former club Swan Districts, who demanded $50,000 from the Bulldogs to keep Beasley in Victoria as the WAFL Swans believed his lease had expired[3] – though nothing was actually given.

In 1988, Beasley kicked 82 goals to overtake Templeton as the Bulldogs’ most prolific goal scorer. However, after a major back injury in the pre-season Beasley played in the reserves for the first three rounds of 1989.[4] He did return in the fourth round and kicked six goals the following week against Melbourne, but the following four rounds saw only six further goals and his knee and back injuries forced Beasley into retirement in June.

Beasley remains the highest goal kicker in the Bulldogs’ history and also kicked the most goals during the 1980’s in the VFL.[5]

Life after Football

In 1997, Beasley was appointed as one of the founding directors for the Trevor Barker Foundation, which in partnership with Challenge provides a holiday facility in Torquay for children going through cancer and their families. He stepped aside in 2010.

In July 1999, Beasley was dismissed from his position of associate director at Credit Suisse First Boston for apparent breaches of compliance related to having business interests outside work. Beasley, who had worked for CSFB since 1993, said he would contest the charges.[6]

In 2006 Beasley was appointed to host the Western Region Football League's show on Channel 31, renamed The Simon Beasley Show.

Beasley obtained his bookmaker license in 2002 and set up his own betting company. In 2009, he was charged with breaching a number of betting regulations between April 2006 and October 2008. Specifically, he had taken 1,598 bets totalling $3.8 million in turnover without lodging them with racing authorities. Beasley pleaded guilty, was fined AUD$50,000 and suspended for four years before making a return to bookmaking in 2018.[7][8][9]

Playing statistics

[10]
Legend
 G  Goals  K  Kicks  D  Disposals  T  Tackles
 B  Behinds  H  Handballs  M  Marks
Led the league for the season only
Led the league after finals only
Led the league after season and finals
Season Team No. Games Totals Averages (per game)
G B K H D M T G B K H D M T
1982 Footscray 18 21 82 67 181 48 229 120 N/A 3.9 3.2 8.6 2.3 10.9 5.7 N/A
1983 Footscray 18 20 69 37 136 34 170 92 N/A 3.5 1.9 6.8 1.7 8.5 4.6 N/A
1984 Footscray 18 18 61 37 128 16 144 99 N/A 3.4 2.1 7.1 0.9 8.0 5.5 N/A
1985 Footscray 18 25 105 41 172 23 195 127 N/A 4.2 1.6 6.9 0.9 7.8 5.1 N/A
1986 Footscray 18 22 88 48 156 23 179 111 N/A 4.0 2.2 7.1 1.0 8.1 5.0 N/A
1987 Footscray 18 21 73 47 146 32 178 124 3 3.5 2.2 7.0 1.5 8.5 5.9 0.1
1988 Footscray 18 21 82 29 142 15 157 107 3 3.9 1.4 6.8 0.7 7.5 5.1 0.1
1989 Footscray 18 6 15 15 39 8 47 33 2 2.5 2.5 6.5 1.3 7.8 5.5 0.3
Career 154 575 321 1100 199 1299 813 8 3.7 2.1 7.1 1.3 8.4 5.3 0.2

References

  1. ^ Zurbo (2016)
  2. ^ "Historical Timeline - 1980s". Western Bulldogs. 16 December 2019.
  3. ^ Stocks, Gary; ‘Swans Sue for $50,000’; The West Australian, 16 July 1986, p. 128
  4. ^ Linnell, Gary; ‘Dogs’ New Litter Leaves Blues Flat’; The Age, 3 April 1989, p. 32
  5. ^ "AFL Tables - Simon Beasley - Stats - Statistics". afltables.com. Retrieved 5 May 2021.
  6. ^ Mayne, Stephen, ed. (15 July 1999). "REAR WINDOW - Footy legend gets the boot". Australian Financial Review.
  7. ^ "HEARING RESULT – LICENSED BOOKMAKER SIMON BEASLEY" (PDF). Racing Victoria. 3 April 2009.
  8. ^ Millar, Paul (3 April 2009). "Bookmaker Simon Beasley disqualified for four years over scam". The Age. Fairfax Media. Retrieved 26 February 2014.
  9. ^ "Exiled bookie a sure bet for big return". The West Australian. 4 September 2018. Retrieved 26 April 2021.
  10. ^ Simon Beasley's player profile at AFL Tables