Brett Kirk Finally Breaks His Silence On Bizarre Rant 10 Years Later
— 22 September 2022

Brett Kirk Finally Breaks His Silence On Bizarre Rant 10 Years Later

— 22 September 2022
Billy Booker
Billy Booker

More than 10 years on from Brett Kirk’s bizarre ‘Thanks Basil’ rant during his TV commentary debut, the Sydney premiership player has finally spoken about the viral video, confirming what we all suspected: He was NOT taking the piss.

So famous is this incident among football circles that it was voted the best moment of the AFL era by a legion of hardcore fans earlier this month. Kirk, who admits he didn’t have any training before jumping behind the microphone, can now laugh at himself.

“I have a giggle because my son and all his mates, they know it off by heart. They throw a fair bit of stick around it,” Brett Kirk, now a Sydney Swans assistant, told Triple M.

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“I walk around the boundary and someone yells ‘Thanks Basil.’ It’s funny – I was fair dinkum!

“It was the first time the Saturday arvo crew were together, so I thought I’d do something different here other than talk about the weather and teams in the rooms, and have a bit of yarn. I’ve copped a bit of stick over time, but I actually wasn’t taking the piss at all, it’s fair dinkum.”

Unsurprisingly, Brett Kirk didn’t last long as a boundary rider. He was back in the thick of coaching soon after. But his spiel has stood the test of time in online forums across the country.

Kirk added: “I knew it was my first cross with the Saturday afternoon team, I had a little bit of a think about what I’d like to do and then just threw it out there.”

Young social media sensations Shepmates quizzed Hawthorn’s Tom Mitchell, St Kilda’s Jack Steele, and Brisbane’s Lachie Neale before the Brownlow Medal on Sunday night, and all three AFL stars remembered large chunks of Kirk’s rant.

On the 10-year anniversary in April, Basil Zempilas – the man who crossed to Kirk in the rooms – recounted that fateful Saturday afternoon in 2012.

“Not a day goes by when somebody doesn’t message me on one of my inboxes on social media with the ‘thanks Basil’ and the whole script,” Basil said on Triple M Breakfast with Basil and Xav.

“For that reason I think, I’ve never really wanted to watch it.”

Somewhat unfortunately for Kirk, the younger generation of fans only know him for this off centre spiel. He was, however, an excellent footballer. He won two best and fairest awards at Sydney, was selected in the All-Australian side, and played 241 games. 

The lesson? It doesn’t matter how well you play football if you do something weird on TV these days. 

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