WATCH: Aussie PM downs beer in a few seconds, sparking debate

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott was caught on video downing a beer in a few seconds at a Sydney pub, sparking a debate on social media and prompting comparisons to another drink-chugging former leader.

The video, reportedly recorded on Saturday night, showed the leader knocking back a glass of Australia’s Victoria Bitter in about six seconds as a large crowd surrounding him yelled “scull” repeatedly.

“Scull” is a slang term for drinking a glass of beer in one go.

Abbott was “proud as punch” when he grabbed a beer and “drank from head-to-toe the entire schooner (glass), dribbling little bits on his shirt", Simon Carrodus, an Australian Football Rules coach for the University of Technology, Sydney told the Australian Women’s Weekly magazine.

Carrodus said his university’s football club was holding an event at an eastern Sydney pub when they spotted the prime minister.

“I walked over to Tony and said ‘will you come over and have a beer with the best players as part of the (club’s) presentation’,” he said.

“He said ‘absolutely no problem’.”

Abbott drew parallels with Bob Hawke, who was prime minister from 1983 to 1991 and was reputedly a world champion for drinking a yard-glass of beer, about three pints or 1.7 litres, in a record time of 11 seconds.

Abbott’s glass was a schooner, which in New South Wales state where Sydney is located can hold 425 millilitres of liquid.

The prime minister, who last January warned of the dangers of binge drinking, was previously mocked by some for ordering a shandy – a half-beer, half-lemonade drink – during the 2010 general election.

Social media users debated Abbott’s beer-drinking actions, with some suggesting he had used it to get a boost in opinion polls after surviving a leadership challenge in February.

Others defended him.