I'm no diver, insists Roos' Brent Harvey - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

I'm no diver, insists Roos' Brent Harvey

By Adam Cooper 29/07/2008 07:33:24 PM Comments (0)

North Melbourne star Brent Harvey denies he stages for free kicks but maintains he is entitled to stand up for himself against opposition AFL taggers.

The competition's smallest man has stood by his criticism of Melbourne stopper Lynden Dunn following Sunday's game, in which the North star told how he accused his opponent of selfishness by focusing solely on Harvey and not running forward when required.

If that public criticism was not hurtful enough, Melbourne are also understood to be annoyed that Dunn was twice reported for striking Harvey to minor incidents.

One charge was thrown out by the match review panel, but Harvey made the other strike look worse than it was, as he pointed to his chin to the umpire after Dunn swung his arm across the Kangaroo's chest. Harvey was awarded a free kick.

Dunn reluctantly pleaded guilty to striking Harvey, which earned him a reprimand. But he can play Essendon on Saturday.

Melbourne have reportedly voiced their annoyance of Harvey's hamming it up to the AFL umpiring department, but a club spokesman refused to either confirm or deny the claim.

Harvey admitted he dove early in his career in an attempt to win free kicks, but was adamant those days were long gone.

"I reckon I might have done that five or six years ago," he said.

"But I reckon I've improved as a player the last four or five years and I reckon I'm past that.

"I don't think I do that .. it's up to them to follow that through."

Harvey won a strong show of support from his captain Adam Simpson, who told the Demons to address their own problems before they complained about another club.

"I would have thought they've got bigger problems than worrying about whether we dive or not," said Simpson towards Melbourne, who are bottom of the ladder with only two wins.

"I can guarantee it's not an issue with us.

"Brent Harvey's had 12 free kicks for the year, so if he's been diving it hasn't been working."

Harvey, the second favourite behind Geelong's Gary Ablett to win this year's Brownlow Medal, said he was entitled to verbal opposition players if it meant shaking their close attention.

"I can promise you that I'm not the only one, not from our team but from opposition teams," he said.

"Speak to (North tagger) Brady Rawlings and see what he cops every single week.

"What I said was something so small and I can't believe it's been in the papers the last couple of days.

"It's a slow news week."

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