Footy legend Anthony Stevens recalls the shocking incident that left him one centimetre from death – but forgets to mention Wayne Carey’s involvement

  • Former North Melbourne teammates had bitter falling out 
  • Stevens’ ex-wife cheated on him with Carey in 2002 
  • Premiership winner told terrifying tale on Wednesday night 

Two-time AFL premiership player Anthony Stevens has opened up about the time a window pane left him a centimetre from death after it fell and struck him while he was leaving a pub.

Stevens, 53, was cut badly from the corner of his mouth to his shoulder when the glass landed on him outside a North Melbourne hotel in 2000.

The bizarre accident occurred as he left the Redback Brewery Hotel, which was co-owned by his then-mate Wayne Carey – just two years before Carey’s affair with Stevens’ ex-wife Kelli became public, forcing the footy great to leave the club in disgrace.

Stevens had gone to the pub following a Kangaroos loss and had just one beer with his mates before leaving the establishment through a side door.

‘I heard this bang and felt this force hit me on the side of the face – so essentially it was a whole plate glass window that came down and hit me from there to the back of my neck,’ Stevens recalled on Channel Seven’s The Front Bar on Wednesday night – while refusing to mention Carey.

‘It cut two main arteries and essentially they were saying that it was a centimetre off the main artery, and if it had have hit that I would have bled to death.

‘But I was two seconds across the road from the Royal Melbourne Hospital.’

The brother of former footy star Shannon Grant got in his car and rushed Stevens to the hospital for treatment.

Anthony Stevens (pictured right with his fellow North Melbourne great Glenn Archer) recalled the night a rogue pane of glass came perilously close to killing him

The premiership winner was sidelined for more than three months after the incident, which saw him lose two litres of blood.

‘If I had have been 10 minutes away from a hospital, I would have bled to death,’ he told Fox Footy in 2015.

‘The next day the specialist came in and assessed the whole scenario and pretty much said I’d have to get the nerves attached back together.

‘He pretty much said he didn’t know how much luck he’d have. He said I’d probably have a dropped shoulder and a dropped lip for the rest of my life and I definitely wouldn’t be playing football.

The pub where Stevens lost his life was co-owned by his then-mate Wayne Carey (pictured together) - who ended their friendship in infamous fashion just two years later

The pub where Stevens lost his life was co-owned by his then-mate Wayne Carey (pictured together) – who ended their friendship in infamous fashion just two years later

Once close on and off the field, Carey and Stevens had a bitter falling out that resurfaced when they clashed in a Melbourne pub in 2022

Once close on and off the field, Carey and Stevens had a bitter falling out that resurfaced when they clashed in a Melbourne pub in 2022

‘I wasn’t too concerned about football at that time, but in the end I had surgery and he was able to attach it all back … I ended up playing 14 weeks later.’

Carey and Stevens’ friendship was ended by the cheating episode, which saw ‘The King’ leave North and shift to the Adelaide Crows.

The pair clashed on the field when the teams played in 2003, then clashed once again off the field in 2022.

They reportedly had to be separated when they crossed paths in a Melbourne pub in August that year when they were in town for a 1996 premiership reunion. 

Witnesses alleged Carey accused Stevens of ‘talking behind his back and telling people he couldn’t be contacted and to not bother trying to catch up with him, but then being fine in-person’, according to a report on SEN radio. 

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