Crawford, Kelly facing AFL suspensions - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Crawford, Kelly facing AFL suspensions

By Roger Vaughan 12/03/2007 07:44:13 PM Comments (0)

Hawthorn veteran Shane Crawford and Geelong onballer James Kelly face delayed starts to the AFL season after falling foul of the match review panel.

Crawford can accept a reprimand and a one-game suspension for two striking offences, while an early plea would mean Kelly missing the opening two rounds on a rough-conduct charge.

Their clubs are yet to decide whether to take the charges to the tribunal.

Kelly's trouble comes a week after young team-mate Mathew Stokes received a four-game ban for his front-on bump of Port Adelaide's Peter Burgoyne.

Brisbane midfielder Jed Adcock had disposed of the ball during Friday night's NAB Cup semi-final at Telstra Dome when Kelly met him with a solid bump.

The impact floored Adcock and he had to leave the field for treatment, the panel rating it a level-three offence.

The following night, Crawford made contact with Fremantle's Ryley Dunn in the third term of their practice match at Subiaco, sparking a melee.

Crawford's clean tribunal record meant he escaped with a reprimand for the level-two striking offence.

In the last quarter of the match, Fremantle onballer Peter Bell held his throat after an incident with Crawford.

The panel rated it a level-three strike and that earnt Crawford the one-match ban, with his prior good record again saving him from a harsher penalty.

Without his five-year good record, Crawford would have received a two-game ban for the Bell incident.

Under tribunal rules, the Dunn incident did not affect the Bell penalty because they happened in the same game.

But the residual points from the two incidents will hang over Crawford's head if the panel books him again this season.

If he takes the early plea for the cases, he has a total of 196.87 points - just short of two games - which will add to any future penalty.

The Hawks and Cats are out of the NAB Cup, the official pre-season competition, meaning Crawford and Kelly will have to serve their suspensions in the regular season and not in upcoming practice games.

Meanwhile, Brisbane has solved its accommodation headache ahead of Saturday night's NAB Cup final against Carlton at Telstra Dome.

The Lions usually stay at a hotel across the road from Albert Park, also the venue next weekend for the F1 Grand Prix and the world swimming championships.

Those two events have created a heavy demand for accommodation and a club spokesman confirmed the Lions will instead stay this weekend at a hotel in suburban Glen Waverley.

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