AFL Statistics Home
AFL Fixture
Player Rankings
Team Rankings
Rising Stars
AFL Draft
Brownlow Medal
AFL Ladder
AFL Fantasy
AFL Highlights
AFL Team Selections
Past Players
AFL Player Contracts
AFL Injury List

Tadhg Kennelly

Last played for Sydney Swans in 2011
Games: 197     Born: July 1, 1981     Origin: Ireland
Playing Height: 189cm     Playing Weight: 90kg     Position: Defender
Last Drafted: Round 1, Pick #9 1999 Rookie Draft by Sydney Swans
View Other Player Profiles
Search or find Past Players

Tadhg Kennelly Biography

Wednesday, 20 May 2020
Sydney assistant coach Tadhg Kennelly, as well as opposition analyst Stuart Maxfield, and NEAFL and Team Swans manager Craig Holden, have been stood down from their duties as clubs continue to grapple with the financial impacts of the AFL's 2020 season shutdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

"All have been wonderful servants of the club, we are feeling for them and their families," Swans head of football Charlie Gardiner said.

"Unfortunately, we do not know what the future holds, as we continue to see the landscape change throughout this crisis. What we do know is the impact of these changes will be felt for some time to come."

Monday, 29 May 2017
Geelong's Irish recruit Mark O'Connor has defended the role of Tadhg Kennelly in scouting the best young Gaelic football talent and offering them opportunities to play professionally in Australia.

There has been an ongoing, and heated, conversation in Ireland about the AFL and international talent scout Kennelly poaching young talented Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) players over the last few years.

The discussion reached a critical point last week when former GAA star Toms S wrote an article in the Irish Independent newspaper expressing his concern about Kennelly and the AFL draining the country's talent pool.

O'Connor, 20, a junior star with County Kerry in Gaelic football, made his debut for the Cats against Essendon in round eight, just seven months after moving to Australia and having played just four VFL games in the lead up.

"The thing is back home no-one's been slighting me, they've only been supportive," O'Connor told

"The attitude toward Tadhg Kennelly and what he's actually doing is something I can't agree with. The opportunities that are provided for young players like myself out here are something that can't be passed up or frowned upon.

"The opportunities aren't the same back home as they are here, and for people back home in our own county to be slighting one of our own is not something that really sits well with me."

Thursday, 19 November 2015
Hell-bent on unearthing the next Irish star, Tadhg Kennelly will conduct a combine with the country's top 25 young athletes.

"I've organised for 25 of Ireland's best 18, 19 and 20-year-olds, hopefully to try and give them an opportunity to go and play in Australia," Kennelly, an assistant coach with the Australian team, said.

"We've had some success with it."

Thursday, 19 March 2015
Tadhg Kennelly adds another accolade to his long list of achievements after being inducted into the Sydney Swans' Hall of Fame.
Monday, 14 October 2013
Despite his Irish ties, Tadhg Kennelly joins Michael O'Loughlin's team coaching the Australians in this year's International Rules Series.

"I'm very strong and I know who I am. I'm very proud of where I come from, what I stand for and who I am," Kennelly said.

"I love the series and I love the concept and I don't want to see it fail.

"I've felt the Irish had the upper hand in the last few series and I'm just trying to impart a small body of my knowledge onto (the Australian team)."

Thursday, 8 December 2011
Premiership player and ex-Swan Tadhg Kennelly has accepted a role as an AFL ambassador.

"I know from my own experiences what it is like to learn new skills, understand a different language and overcome homesickness," Kennelly said.

"It is also appealing to work with the very best emerging talent in Australia with Michael O'Loughlin. I'm also looking forward to experiencing coaching for the first time and to work closely with the best talent in NSW and the ACT."

Saturday, 3 December 2011
Tadhg Kennelly has been appointed to a development role that will see him work with potential footballers in Ireland.

"He talked of his belief, a bit like [Ron] Barassi 40 years ago, saying the game's such a great game, why not expose others to it - why shouldn't the world be playing our game?" AFL talent manager Kevin Sheehan said.

Saturday, 5 November 2011
Tadhg Kennelly claims the GAA Medal as Ireland's Player of the Series for his efforts against Australia during the 2011 International Rules series.

"I remember singing the national anthem and I was welling up a bit," Kennelly said.

"I've played six series and I'm a very, very passionate person. There's times I shouldn't have played; I was injured and I played and I wanted to do that for my country. "

Thursday, 1 September 2011
The Swans' premiership-winning Irishman Tadhg Kennelly announces his retirement.

"It's been a difficult decision. The last couple of weeks I've been battling with myself to figure out whether to play on or not," Kennelly said.

"But I've decided I'm in a good place at the moment and I'm quite happy to go out at the end of the season.

Wednesday, 31 August 2011
Pearce Hanley says he has based his game on fellow Irishman and Swan Tadhg Kennelly.

"Since I've got here, just what he's done, he's been a great player, he's won a premiership, he's done everything really," Hanley said.

"He's even gone home and won an All Ireland, so whatever Tadhg's done, he's a good role model and I try and base my game off his really."

Wednesday, 8 June 2011
Out-of-contract defender Tadhg Kennelly is keen to begin talks with the Sydney Swans, revealing he wants to extend his career well beyond 2011.

"I want to be a Swan for the rest of my life and I can see myself playing for another couple of years no problem at all," Kennelly said.

"So long as my body keeps going the way it's going - you get a lot wiser when you get older about how to look after your body. I'd like to sit down with the club in the next few weeks and iron out a contract."

Wednesday, 9 February 2011
Sydney Swans defender Tadhg Kennelly is expected to be right for round one after suffering a dislocated kneecap in the off-season.

"It's been frustrating being injured, but I'm definitely on track to play round one. At the moment I'm still seven weeks away from round one, but anything can happen and I'm not going to put myself under any pressure," Kennelly said.

"I think what happens every year is you come off six months without playing any footy and all the focus is on round one. But often when you're in the season, you want to have a game off here or there, but you don't think about that during the summer."

Tuesday, 7 December 2010
Swans defender Tadhg Kennelly has undergone knee surgery after injuring his right medial ligament in a training mishap in Ireland.
Monday, 29 March 2010
Sydney coach Paul Roos is angered by Tadhg Kennelly being knocked unconscious by a late Zac Dawson spoil during the Swans' round 1 clash against St Kilda.

"I was expecting a 50m penalty. In the box we were all expecting a 50m penalty. Unless I've got the rules wrong, which obviously I have," Roos said.

Kennelly said he was still feeling the effects of the clash the day after.

"I'm sore all over ... I've got a big lump on my head," Kennelly said.

"I saw him coming ... so I tried to raise my leg and turn my body into him."

Tuesday, 23 March 2010
Sydney Swans defender Tadgh Kennelly says this year's team reminds him of the breakthrough side of 2003.

"There's great excitement amongst the team and it really has the feeling of 2003," he said.

"We're very unpredictable and we're quietly confident amongst ourselves. The whole AFL world are putting us down, which is great. The Swans love being underdogs."

Tuesday, 16 February 2010
Sydney Swans defender Craig Bolton says Tadhg Kennelly is ready to slot straight back into the side this weekend.

"It's like he never really went overseas for a year, so we're looking forward to having him back there in the backline this week," Bolton said.

"I'm sure he'll be fine and play really well. He's been really impressive at training, along with Nick Malceski. They've been standout performers so far on the training track so we're looking forward to see big things from them in the pre-season."

Friday, 29 January 2010
Tadhg Kennelly says that being part of Paul Roos' final season as Swans coach was a big reason he wanted to return to Sydney.

"Kind of in a subconscious way knowing that it was Roosy's last year as well I thought I'd love to be part of it," Kennelly said.

"Him and (assistant coach) George Stone have been the two biggest influences on my career. He has enabled me to express myself in football and really express my opinions on and off the field."

Saturday, 23 January 2010
Sydney premiership defender Tadhg Kennelly says taking a break from AFL to win a title in the Gaelic Football National Championship has been beneficial to his physical condition.

"Missing last season to return to Ireland has turned out to be a blessing in disguise," he said.

"The body is the best it's been for a long time and I just can't wait to get going.

"I have signed for another two years but, the way I'm feeling, playing beyond 2011 is a real possibility."

Wednesday, 9 December 2009
Tadhg Kennelly says draft concessions to the new Gold Coast and Western Sydney teams will result in a flood of Irish recruits to the AFL.

"There are two new clubs coming into the competition and a lot of the clubs around the country are going to lose draft picks because of concessions," Kennelly said.

"They're going to be looking for the next ready-made talent and I definitely think there's a pool of talent in Ireland that's ready to be tapped into."

Sydney Swans defender Tadhg Kennelly says St Kilda's Irish recruit Tommy Walsh has the raw athleticism to match Nick Riewoldt and Justin Koschitzke.

"Tommy's a big, strong guy; he's a monster of a guy," Kennelly said.

"He's extremely strong and that's raw, natural strength.

"He would have done a very, very little amount of weights but he's a very explosive type of player, in the build of a Koschitzke or Riewoldt type at St Kilda."

Wednesday, 18 November 2009
Tadgh Kennelly says he is glad to be back at the Swans and is looking forward to working in tandem with Rhyce Shaw and Nick Malceski.

"Obviously it will be great to have Rhyce Shaw and Nick Malceski up and going ... it gives one of us the opportunity to go into the midfield or half forward," he said.

"I'm sure there will be a rotation policy that will happen and it's something that the club was looking forward to last year before I made the decision to leave. Obviously we can look forward to doing it now in 2010."

Kennelly also believes he'll be a better player following his time in Ireland.

"I owe the Swans a lot and feel I'll be a much better player because I don't have that drawcard of going back to Ireland any more," Kennelly said.

"I feel that weight is off my shoulders. I feel like I can now express myself a lot more."

Friday, 13 November 2009
Premiership defender Tadhg Kennelly has returned to the Swans after achieving his ambition of winning an All-Ireland title with Kerry.

"It's great news for the footy club," Sydney coach Paul Roos told SEN radio.

"He's a terrific player and the year off has only helped him from a footy point of view get his body back right and we look forward to seeing him next week."

Tadhg Kennelly's Swans teammates are delighted that he has returned from Ireland.

"Having recruited the likes of Rhyce Shaw and Marty Mattner, and with Nick Malceski back there, we're going to have some great run with bringing Tadhg back into the team," Swans co-captain Brett Kirk said.

"Those guys haven't played a lot of footy together so we're really looking forward to having some real rebound, which you need in AFL footy these days."

Sydney coach Paul Roos reveals that St Kilda counterpart Ross Lyon tried to snare Tadhg Kennelly.

"Rossy rang me during trade week and was up front with me, and just said the Saints wanted to explore the options with Tadhg," Roos said.

"But I said to him at the time, 'If Tadhg comes back to Australia, I strongly believe he'll come back to us at the Swans'. He's a huge part of this footy club and we knew his heart lay in Sydney."

Friday, 6 November 2009
Tadhg Kennelly reveals how close he came to cutting short his AFL career in his new book Unfinished Business.

"I was hit by a serious bout of homesickness," Kennelly writes.

"Every time I was at my local shopping centre, I would stand there and stare at the fares for London and picture myself walking inside and booking a ticket. So many times I wanted to do it, not tell anyone, hop in a taxi to the airport.

"I was in a very dark place; in fact, I would say I was depressed. Each night I would cry myself to sleep. I would hide in my room and ask myself over and over again, 'What the f--- am I doing?'"

Monday, 26 October 2009
Sydney Swans coach Paul Roos says the club has not yet set a deadline for Tadhg Kennelly's decision on his AFL future with Kennelly currently in the middle of a book launch.

"Obviously he's been really busy with the book launch and the grand final and all that other stuff, so I haven't spoken to him," Roos said.

"But I think he's smart enough to know. He's got a manager over here who deals with a lot of other players and he'd be aware of that."

In his book, Kennelly describes the emotions involved in deciding between Gaelic football and AFL.

"I described how my heart was with Kerry and how I felt I hadn't yet become all I could be as a Gaelic footballer," he wrote.

"All of this was true but the reality was I didn't know what I was going to do. There were so many factors to consider.

"My family, my life with Nicole, my financial future, my sense of unfinished business in Australia."

Tuesday, 22 September 2009
Former Sydney star Tadhg Kennelly appears to have turned his back on a return to the Australia and the AFL saying he is committed to County Kerry in Ireland.

"I've had a great time at Sydney. I haven't really thought about it at the moment, but I will sit down and have a good think about it," Kennelly said.

"My head is truly, truly set on Kerry. And my heart. That's probably the main thing that has come out here."

Monday, 21 September 2009
The chances of Tadhg Kennelly rejoining Sydney are boosted after Kerry wins Gaelic football's final.

Kennelly scored twice to help Kerry to beat Cork in Gaelic football's All-Ireland final.

Thursday, 17 September 2009
Sydney Swans coach Paul Roos will travel to Ireland to watch Tadhg Kennelly's Gaelic football grand final this weekend and says Kennelly returning to play for the Swans is still a possibility.

"If at some time in the future he wants to bring it up, I'm certainly happy to talk and see where he's at and where his body is and what he's thinking," Roos said.

Tuesday, 4 August 2009
Former Swan Tadhg Kennelly's county notched an empatic win to keep his dream of winning an All-Ireland championship alive.
Tuesday, 7 April 2009
Michael Quinn's debut for Essendon started as a circus act but quickly became another amazing Irish success story.

Those in the know at Essendon say Quinn may be headed for the type of stellar career Sydney's Tadhg Kennelly enjoyed.

Saturday, 7 March 2009
Premiership-winning Swan Tadgh Kennelly has no regrets since leaving the club that made him famous.
Thursday, 29 January 2009
Dashing Sydney defender Tadhg Kennelly is expected to announce his retirement from the AFL today.
Sydney Swans defender Tadhg Kennelly announces his AFL retirement to return home to Ireland for family reasons.
Saturday, 17 January 2009
Sydney's star Irishman has resolved to make his last AFL season a special one.
Friday, 9 January 2009
Sydney has quashed reports from Ireland that star defender Tadhg Kennelly has quit the Swans to return home.
Compare Teams
Blues Bombers Bulldogs
Cats Crows Demons
Dockers Eagles Giants
Hawks Kangaroos Lions
Magpies Power Saints
Suns Swans Tigers
All Players
Player Search
Past Players
Other Players
Compare Players
Blues Bombers Bulldogs
Cats Crows Demons
Dockers Eagles Giants
Hawks Kangaroos Lions
Magpies Power Saints
Suns Swans Tigers
League Averages
League Totals
Rising Star Averages
Rising Star Totals
Season Goalkickers
Blues Bombers Bulldogs
Cats Crows Demons
Dockers Eagles Giants
Hawks Kangaroos Lions
Magpies Power Saints
Suns Swans Tigers
Team Averages
Team Totals
Opponent Averages
Opponent Totals
Team/Opponent Differential Averages
Team/Opponent Differential Totals
Full AFL Draft History
Draft Summary by Team
Blues Bombers Bulldogs
Cats Crows Demons
Dockers Eagles Giants
Hawks Kangaroos Lions
Magpies Power Saints
Suns Swans Tigers
Rising Star Round by Round
Rising Star Nominees
Rising Star Winners
Blues Bombers Bulldogs
Cats Crows Demons
Dockers Eagles Giants
Hawks Kangaroos Lions
Magpies Power Saints
Suns Swans Tigers
Full Season AFL Fixture
Blues Bombers Bulldogs
Cats Crows Demons
Dockers Eagles Giants
Hawks Kangaroos Lions
Magpies Power Saints
Suns Swans Tigers
Full Season
Live Ladder
Round Match Period Location
Venue Stats
Full Brownlow Medal Count
Brownlow Medal Winners
Summary by Team
Blues Bombers Bulldogs
Cats Crows Demons
Dockers Eagles Giants
Hawks Kangaroos Lions
Magpies Power Saints
Suns Swans Tigers
AFL Crowds & Attendances
Blues Bombers Bulldogs
Cats Crows Demons
Dockers Eagles Giants
Hawks Kangaroos Lions
Magpies Power Saints
Suns Swans Tigers
AFL Coaches
Blues Bombers Bulldogs
Cats Crows Demons
Dockers Eagles Giants
Hawks Kangaroos Lions
Magpies Power Saints
Suns Swans Tigers
AFL Highlights
Blues Bombers Bulldogs
Cats Crows Demons
Dockers Eagles Giants
Hawks Kangaroos Lions
Magpies Power Saints
Suns Swans Tigers
Round by Round Player Rankings
Season Player Rankings
Supercoach Breakevens
Supercoach Scores
Supercoach Prices
Custom Supercoach Player List
Pre-Season Supercoach Stats
Round by Round Player Rankings
Season Player Rankings
AFL Fantasy Breakevens
AFL Fantasy Scores
AFL Fantasy Prices
Custom AFL Fantasy Player List
Pre-Season AFL Fantasy Stats
Latest Team Selections
Custom Team Selections List
Blues Bombers Bulldogs
Cats Crows Demons
Dockers Eagles Giants
Hawks Kangaroos Lions
Magpies Power Saints
Suns Swans Tigers
Blues Bombers Bulldogs
Cats Crows Demons
Dockers Eagles Giants
Hawks Kangaroos Lions
Magpies Power Saints
Suns Swans Tigers