The AFL should send players for violent actions that incapacitate a player

With Geelong’s Tom Stewart being reported for his violent act which left Richmond’s Dion Prestia physically unable to stay in the game, I am arguing that the AFL should evict players for such violations.

In terms of the Geelong vs Richmond game, the offending player (Stewart) remained on the field for the remainder of the game and played a key role in Geelong holding off Richmond’s comeback with a timely mark in the defensive 50 with minutes remaining. to go.

Stewart led the Geelong pre-match possession count with 29 (and six points), while a sick and sad Prestia watched from the stands.

A broadcast option would align the AFL with other professional sports that punish odorous abuses of the rules by sending the culprit away.

While I recognize that it can be difficult to know whether the action was intentional or simply reckless, the determining factor for maximum penalty would be whether the illegal play takes an opposing player out of play.

But a send-out option doesn’t have to leave an AFL team a player short, as is the case in football and the rugby codes when a player is sent off created a huge disadvantage that makes it extremely difficult to gain a lead or even defend .

There is a clear need to ensure that every AFL game remains fair given the huge advantage a team with greater numbers would have from a long and wide Australian rules football pitch.

Tom Stewart and his Cats teammates look downcast

(Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)

Can you imagine a team running down the middle with an extra man in play, or an extra man in defense?

Hence, an AFL expulsion rule might allow a team to replace the suspended player with a substitute, but leave that team with one less substitute for the remainder of the game.

This would be more in line with the example of basketball when a violent offense allows the substituted player to be replaced.

But overseeing this broadcast option in the AFL requires video umpires who can act quickly to inform the field umpires that a serious incident needs to be reviewed.

On Saturday, much to the fury of commentators, the game continued around Prestia as he lay on the ground not knowing where he was, and play continued with the Cats scoring a goal through Tyson Stengle as Prestia was knocked off the ground. helped.

This was clearly an unfair situation for Richmond in a game that was decided by less than a goal.

The eviction rule would have the benefit of making each player think twice about violently hindering a player, either intentionally or recklessly, which can also help minimize concussions, a matter of primary concern for the AFL.

At a time when some of the recent rule changes have left players and fans alike appalled and confused, there are few reasons why the AFL couldn’t modernize its game with a reprieve, given the tremendous advantage gained from an intentional or unintentional action involving a lead player gets knocked out during a match, especially when the option I suggest wouldn’t leave a team with fewer players on the field.

What do readers think?