Rivers found guilty of umpire contact - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Rivers found guilty of umpire contact

28/04/2009 06:12:40 PM Comments (0)

The AFL Tribunal has found Melbourne defender Jared Rivers guilty of negligent umpire contact.

Rivers received a $2,600 fine after he clipped feet with field umpire Justin Schmitt in the third quarter of Sunday's loss to Adelaide at the MCG.

Rivers testified that Schmitt had backed away from a bounce at a slight angle and this caused the umpire to make contact with him.

"As a defender, I don't see how I could have done anything differently," Rivers said.

But Rivers became the latest player to be penalised under an AFL crackdown this season on players who make contact with an umpire after the ball is bounced.

There was no argument that Schmitt backed away at an angle but the jury decided that Rivers was close enough to warrant the negligent finding.

"It's because there might be harm that (players) have this duty to avoid contact," tribunal advocate Jeff Gleeson said in his summing up.

"He (Rivers) is very, very close to setting up behind the umpire."

Rivers did not set up immediately behind Schmitt at the bounce, otherwise he would have been charged with the more serious offence of making reckless contact.

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