Aker dropped from Lions for Hawks clash - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Aker dropped from Lions for Hawks clash

By Sam Lienert 20/07/2006 07:52:58 PM Comments (0)

Outspoken Brisbane triple-premiership star Jason Akermanis might have played his last AFL match for the club after again being axed for disciplinary reasons.

The Lions' match committee and players' leadership group made a shock decision to leave Akermanis out of the team for Saturday night's match against Hawthorn at the Gabba.

In a statement, the club said the decision was made in response to Akermanis' comments in an article in Melbourne's Herald Sun Newspaper, in which the 2001 Brownlow medallist said he was almost certain to quit the club after this season.

The Lions said it convinced them Akermanis did not have the "team first attitude" required of its players.

While they also said his future selection would depend on his "ongoing actions", his position with the club now appears almost untenable.

He had already been dropped for the Lions' previous clash with Hawthorn, in round seven, also because the club was unhappy with public comments he made.

At that time Brisbane said the 29-year-old needed to "embrace our ethos and in no way insinuate anything about his long-term future at the club" to regain favour.

But that admonition appears to have done nothing to quieten Akermanis, who told the Herald Sun he was "under five per cent" chance of remaining with the club next season.

That followed another run-in between club and player last month when he was fined $5,000 by the Lions after an abusive message about Brisbane coach Leigh Matthews emanated from his website, although Akermanis said it was written by his brother Rory, who administers the website.

It is one of numerous episodes in which the media-friendly star has demonstrated there is little likelihood he will rein in his outspoken ways.

Unlike the previous time Akermanis was dropped - when poor form did not help his cause - the pacy veteran can not use his playing skills to help him win back his spot this time.

He was already in sparkling form, having played a match-winning hand in the midfield and up forward in last Saturday night's comeback victory over the Kangaroos at Telstra Dome.

Akermanis' exile continues a week of turmoil for Brisbane, which was already reeling from the news that reliable fullback Mal Michael is weighing up retirement.

While Michael was given a break from training this week and Matthews admitted the sturdy defender was struggling for motivation, he was named in the team to play the Hawks.

His manager Michael Quinlan said Michael would play out the rest of the season, before considering his future.

Brisbane players said losing Michael would be a huge blow, but midfielder Luke Power said they would accept it if he wanted to end his career.

"Any decision Mal decides to make, the playing group will support, because we know what he has given to this club," Power told the Ten Network.

"He has had a sensational career at Brisbane and I only want it to go further."

Fellow key defender Justin Leppitsch retired last month, because of a chronic back injury.

The Lions, still in the hunt for a finals berth, are also having to cope without power forward Jonathan Brown, possibly for the rest of the season, with stress fractures of the lower back.

The latest Akermanis furore could also place more doubts in the minds of clubs assessing his value as a potential post-season trade target.

Several high-profile players from other clubs had already publicly spoken out against punting on a player with his record of causing controversy.

Brought to you by AAP AAP © 2022 AAP

0 Comments about this article

Post a comment about this article

Please sign in to leave a comment.
Becoming a member is free and easy, sign up here.

« All sports news