AFL tribunal bans Gehrig for one match - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

AFL tribunal bans Gehrig for one match

By Roger Vaughan 03/05/2005 07:36:14 PM Comments (0)

St Kilda full-forward Fraser Gehrig had half a win at the AFL tribunal, his self-described "tummy tap" costing him one match.

Under the tribunal's points system, the 2004 Coleman Medallist was looking at a two-match penalty whether he contesting the striking charge or not.

But the three-man jury of former players Stewart Loewe, Richard Loveridge and Wayne Schimmelbusch downgraded the charge from an intentional act to reckless when finding Gehrig guilty.

That reclassified the incident as warranting a one-match ban.

Gehrig's advocate, Iain Findlay, then argued the Saint should only receive a reprimand, saying it would be "ludicrous" if a ban was applied.

While the jury took 25 minutes in its deliberation to reclassify the charge and find Gehrig guilty, it only took a couple more to decide on the penalty.

Gehrig and Saints football manager Matt Rendell left the hearing stony-faced and without making comment.

Gehrig, who again leads the AFL goalkicking list this season on 23, will now miss Saturday's big game against Geelong at Telstra Dome.

It was the first time under the new AFL tribunal system that chairman David Jones allowed so-called "similar-fact" evidence to be presented.

The retired judge let the Saints show video of seven other incidents this season, with Findlay arguing they were all as serious as Gehrig's, yet had not been deemed reportable.

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