Peter Daicos: “You know my sons…now meet my girls!”

Family will always come first for the AFL great turned I'm A Celeb star.
Loading the player...

There’s no doubting I’m A Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here star Peter Daicos’ strength and resilience.

After all, the AFL legend played 250 games for Collingwood from 1979 to 1993, and kicked a whopping 549 goals during his 14-year career on the field!

WATCH NOW: Peter Daicos’ best AFL moments.

The dad of three also once defied the AFL to create what’s now become a time-honoured tradition.

Upon entering the jungle, Peter, 62, opened up about his history-making lap of honour after his final game. He carried his eldest child, daughter Madison, in his arms around the MCG.

“I asked if I could do it and the AFL said no,”  Peter told his campmates.

“I said to my wife, ‘bugger it, just hand her over to me!’”

History in the making. (Credit: Getty)

Peter’s wife Colleen now tells New Idea that hearing her husband of 33 years describe that iconic moment brought back some special memories.

“Madison was only one at the time,” Colleen, 56, recalls.

“Peter teed it up with me beforehand and when he ran past me at the MCG, I handed her over!”

Now, it’s a touching tradition that most retiring players replicate.

Of course, Madison can’t remember anything from that day – but isn’t surprised that her Dad stood his ground.

“We’re all so incredibly proud of him,” Madison, now 31, says with a smile.

Peter was in proud dad mode when Nick and Josh won the 2023 AFL Grand Final. (Credit: Getty)

The Daicos name is inextricably linked to the Collingwood Football Club. In addition to Peter’s long association with the club, sons Josh, 25, and Nick, 21, both now play for the Magpies. They were part of the club’s 2023 premiership-winning team.

While Colleen and Madison usually prefer the spotlight to shine on the boys in their tight-knit clan, the pair are keen to highlight Peter’s real reasons for going into the jungle.

“When Peter was asked to go to South Africa, initially it was a no,” Colleen reveals.

Taking part in I’m A Celebrity would mean zero contact with his Melbourne-based loved ones during the three-week filming period.

“I think the longest Peter and I have been apart before this is six days,” says Colleen.

Colleen says Peter has “lost so much weight” while in the jungle. (Credit: Channel Ten)

But Peter reconsidered when he realised that appearing on the show could help raise money for the Flicker of Hope Foundation.

He, Josh and Nick are all ambassadors for the charity, which raises funds for research into neurofibromatosis (NF).

The genetic condition causes tumours to grow in the nervous system.

“Peter’s taken this on to raise awareness about the condition and as a personal challenge,” Colleen explains.

Zoe (centre) says it’s “amazing” watching Peter in the jungle. (Credit: Phillip Castleton, Are Media)

The entire Daicos family has been tuning in to watch Peter in the jungle – including their toy cavoodle Odell!

“We’ve all really missed him while he’s been away, but watching him on TV makes us feel really connected to him,” says Madison.

“Odell sits up and listens as soon as he appears on screen.”

Colleen adds that, once Peter exits the jungle, his phone is going to blow up with her many messages!

“I’ve been texting him every day, to let him know what’s been going on,” she explains.

“It’s been so strange not to be able to speak to him.”

The whole family, including pooch Odell, are watching Peter on TV. (Credit: Phillip Castleton, Are Media.)

Both Colleen and Madison agree they aren’t surprised that down-to-earth Peter is proving to be a hit with his fellow campmates – and the show’s viewers.

“Dad is so easy-going, he gets on with anyone,” says Madison.

“It doesn’t matter what their background is.”

And regardless of whether or not Peter is crowned king of the jungle, Colleen and Madison say that they, Josh and Nick couldn’t be prouder of him.

“He really is a legend,” adds Madison.

“Both on the field – and off.”

Related stories