Tuesday, 17 September 2019
Peter Sumich raises eyebrows by claiming there
may be a wider problem at the Eagles if Willie Rioli is proven to have tampered with his urine sample to conceal something sinister.
Sumich said that experience had taught him that there could be wider issues at a club if someone is caught doing something bad.
West Coach Adam Simpson was livid with Sumich's comments, especially with how he drew parallels with what happened at the Eagles during the Ben Cousins era.
"It's just disappointing that you can compare the two and automatically switch to something that happened 12 years ago," Simpson told Channel 7.
"After what we've heard initially with what has happened with Willie – it's a completely different situation.
"For someone who hasn't been at the club for 10 years – it's a bit of an insult to the people who have done all the work to create a really strong culture that's got a really good pedigree.
"It's a bit of a slap in the face to the players and the staff who have all the hard work to get the club in a position where we think we've got a really strong respected culture."
Friday, 13 September 2019
Willie Rioli apologises to friends
and family for his "mistake" that has cost him his 2019 season after being provisionally suspended by ASADA for tampering with a urine test.
"Just want to thank all my real family & friends for all the love and support through this tough time!" Rioli said in a post on Facebook.
"Im so so sorry I had to put yous (sic) all through this! We will get through this!
"I'v gone through tougher times life support, depression, bullying an we've gotten through!
"Hopefully this lil mistake is a lesson to be learnt! This definitely doesn't define me as a person! I love yous all."
Thursday, 12 September 2019
West Coast's Willie Rioli has been provisionally
suspended in relation to an ASADA test in late August and faces a ban of up to four years. ASADA has alleged Rioli used a prohibited method to provide a sample for the test.
"The assertion is that the adverse analytical finding is that there's urine substitution," AFL general counsel Andrew Dillon said.
Eagles football boss Craig Vozzo fronted a hastily-convened press conference in Melbourne, saying the 24-year-old was 'a bit of a mess' following the revelation.
"He's very, very flat. The club and our staff are really worried about his wellbeing," Vozzo said.
"He's not in a great space and it's our job to help him as much as we can."
Media reports have suggested that a sports drink was used in place of the required urine sample.
Friday, 3 May 2019
Willie Rioli signs a two-year contract extension to remain with the Eagles until the end of 2022.
"I'm pretty stoked that the club came to me and said we want you to sign a contract extension," Rioli, currently recovering from a foot stress fracture, said.
"West Coast gave me the opportunity to be where I am today. I'm kind of grateful and just hope that we can keep the success happening."
Friday, 29 March 2019
Willie Rioli will be unavailable for multiple weeks while the Eagles get to the bottom of his foot complaint.
"He's got a stress-related foot injury. It's not a stress fracture. We've just got to give it some time to settle down. He won't be available this week and probably not next week either. We've just got to take it slow," West Coast coach Adam Simpson said.
Monday, 11 March 2019
Luke Shuey says a trimmer Willie Rioli is only beginning to realise his potential.
"He can do things most of us can't, so it's nice to sit back and watch every now and then," Shuey said about Rioli.
"Obviously there was a lot of talk about him getting himself into shape, and now I think he's starting to realise how good he can be himself, but we're seeing what getting a full pre-season into him can do for players like him."
Wednesday, 16 January 2019
Willie Rioli has cut a slimmer figure since returning to pre-season training and he credits his recent return home to the Tiwi Islands as playing a major part.
"The bonus up there is the heat and the humidity. That helps with my skinfolds," he said.
"The training is a lot different. I don't have green grass I can run on, so I've got to run on the rocky roads and we run to the waterholes.
"That's what me and (my cousin) Daniel (Rioli) do a lot and that's what my uncles used to do. We still do it today, run to the water holes, so that's kind of how we train up there."
Sunday, 30 September 2018
Cyril Rioli congratulates his cousin Willie Rioli outside the West Coast rooms as the Eagles celebrate winning the 2018 AFL premiership.
"It was pretty emotional," Rioli said.
"He just congratulated me on the year I had and how he was happy for me.
"It's still sinking in today. It's been a long journey for me. I never thought I'd have the year I've had.
"To have this medal around my neck, it's all credit to mum and dad for that."
Monday, 24 September 2018
Willie Rioli says his famous name will be an inspiration rather than a weight on his shoulders when he steps out for this week's Grand Final as an Eagle against Collingwood.
"This year, I was just hoping to get one game. To have the season I've had and to be where we're at as a team is unbelievable," he said.
Saturday, 8 September 2018
The Riolis have made a name for themselves on the finals stage and Willie Rioli gets his chance to join them when West Coast takes on Collingwood this week at Optus Stadium in their qualifying final.
"I don't really want to get overawed by the name. I really just want to go out there and play my role for the team," Rioli said.
"But then again, it is a privilege and unique experience to have our family name playing.
"I don't want to think too hard at it (the Rioli history) but it's something that's going to be there."
Saturday, 5 May 2018
Willie Rioli picks up 16 touches, at 81 per cent efficiency, while booting two goals and setting up several others in a brilliant performance against Port Adelaide.
"We knew he was talented and we also knew he was aggressive, so I'm not surprised he's contributing like he is, and it looks like he's having fun as well," West Coast coach Adam Simpson said of Rioli.
"I think he's pretty settled in his role at the moment, he's a crafty forward who is really hard to play on and he can pinch-hit on-ball."
Thursday, 19 April 2018
Willie Rioli signs a new two-year deal to remain at West Coast until the end of 2020.
Tuesday, 13 February 2018
Lewis Jetta says Willie Rioli is set to have a breakout year for the Eagles in 2018.
"You can expect some magic. He's a freak," Jetta said about his West Coast teammate.
"He knows where the goals are and he knows how to kick a ball.
"He’s just adjusted to AFL life and all the sacrifices you’ve got to do off-field. I think he’s done that really well – the dieting and extra training.
"Even just getting up early and doing more training. He’s been elite in that area."
Friday, 26 January 2018
West Coast are hoping draftee Liam Ryan will form an exciting partnership with Willie Rioli up forward for the Eagles in 2018.
"The chemistry, especially between him and Willie, is very good," Eagles forward line coach Jaymie Graham said of Ryan.
"He's fitting in well and he's still got plenty of upside and a lot to learn, but it will be exciting to see the two of them fit and available and playing in the same team."
Monday, 13 February 2017
Willie Rioli is facing up to three months on the sidelines after confirmation he will undergo surgery on his damaged hamstring tendon.
The mature-age draftee injured his right hamstring last week and, despite jogging around the boundary and kicking at training, he is set to go under the knife.
Monday, 28 November 2016
West Coast draftee Willie Rioli boasts a bloodline of football royalty, but it wasn't until he lost some excess weight that his AFL dream became a reality.
The 21-year-old was overweight and playing with the Tiwi Bombers in Darwin a few years ago.
But after linking up with SANFL club Glenelg in time for the 2015 season, Rioli dropped a staggering 16kg to put his name in the mix for this year's AFL draft.
"I'm way quicker than what I was with the kilos," Rioli said.
"I'm longer in the game now. I guess moving to the SANFL, the first couple of weeks of training were pretty hard.
"I knew my stay at Adelaide wouldn't be long if I didn't change my weight and my diet.
"I'm grateful I did all that stuff. I knew I had talent. But (I needed) to lose all that weight and play better footy."
Friday, 25 November 2016
West Coast select Willie Rioli with pick No.52 in the 2016 National Draft.
“I didn’t think I would go so early,” Rioli said.
“I thought I would be over the 70 mark so I was a bit shocked when my name was read out.
“When I was selected (my family) all jumped with joy and I felt numb as soon as my name was read out. I didn’t move off the couch for an hour. I just sat there and tried to soak it all in.”