It’s one of the biggest nights in the AFL calendar, as some of Australia’s most famous and successful footballing stars are presented with awards for their efforts – usually with their stunning partners by their side at the glamorous event.
However, one Collingwood player stole the show for a completely different reason at this year’s Brownlow Medal awards, as he took his proud mum along after promising her at age 10 she’d have the honour of accompanying him to his first one.
Magpies player Jaidyn Stephenson, 19, flashed a beaming smile as he linked arms with his mother Raquel, who looked stunning in a knee-length black dress while carrying a statement silver clutch.
Jaidyn dressed to impress for the event too in a black suit and tie and sharing a photo of them together on Instagram, he wrote: “Promised Mum she’d be the first.”
His fans praised him for the sweet gesture, with one of his close friends commenting: “Since you were 10 years old you promised her, great stuff buddy xxxx,” while another added: “That’s just so lovely , you’re a star and you have a huge future wearing that magic 35 in the black and white.”
One more commented: “Congratulations Jaidyn on the year you have had and congratulations to your mum & dad as well, best wishes for this Saturday, I hope you have a great game….. Matt.”
Jaidyn was no doubt in full celebration mode at the event as it comes just a month after he won the AFL’s Rising Star award.
“I’m not much of a crier or a teary person but I did tear up that night – it was just pure relief,” he told the Sunshine Coast Daily of the moment he was drafted by the Magpies at the time. He was supported by his mum, sister Tegan, father Darren and aunt Bernadette as he was presented with the award shortly after.
According to the publication, he took a moment to remember his grandfather Max as he accepted his award. He would often throw rolled-up socks to him when he was a toddler to help his hand-eye co-ordination.
Speaking at the time, he recalled visiting him in hospital after he was diagnosed with dementia and added: “I’d go into the hospital and he wouldn’t know my name, he wouldn’t know who I was, but I’d bring out a footy and he could still kick it to me.”