King AFL ban stands as Tiger fight fails - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

King AFL ban stands as Tiger fight fails

By Sam Lienert 30/08/2011 09:29:07 PM Comments (0)

Richmond small forward Jake King will start the 2012 AFL season under suspension after failing to beat a rough conduct charge, which was only laid when Adelaide alerted the league to the incident.

The feisty Tiger refused to comment as he left the hearing with a two-match ban, for what was deemed a dangerous tackle on Crows defender Andy Otten on Sunday at AAMI Stadium.

The charge was not among those initially laid by the match review panel on Monday but, when the Crows contacted the AFL seeking an explanation, the panel then scrutinised the incident and charged King.

The tribunal jury deliberated for more than 20 minutes on Tuesday night before finding King guilty, despite being shown only inconclusive footage of the incident.

One of two Crows medical reports submitted also stated that while Otten was concussed, that was only discovered minutes before the match finished and it was unclear whether it was a result of King's tackle a quarter earlier.

The tribunal's legal counsel, Jeff Gleeson SC, also acknowledged that King's tackle was conducted in one "fluid" motion, without lifting Otten and ramming him into the ground, and that it was unclear whether King would have been aware Otten had disposed of the ball.

King did not speak in his own defence, but his advocate Michael Tovey QC noted that Otten told trainers after the incident he was fine, stayed on the field and was involved in play just seconds later and that no Crows players remonstrated with King.

The Tigers' penalty was severely compounded by his poor prior record, including five matches suspended within the previous three years, as he could otherwise have escaped with a reprimand.

Instead, he will miss Sunday's clash with North Melbourne and next year's season-opener.

Collingwood midfield star Dale Thomas will miss the opening weekend of the AFL finals, as one of five players to earlier submit guilty pleas.

Thomas' two-game ban means he will miss Friday night's blockbuster against Geelong and, more significantly, the Magpies' qualifying final against West Coast the following weekend.

He would have risked a three-match suspension had he fought the charge of rough conduct against Fremantle's Garrick Ibbotson.

The season is over for North Melbourne's Jack Ziebell and Levi Greenwood, with Ziebell to also miss the opening two rounds of 2012.

He accepted a three-match ban for making forceful front-on contact on St Kilda captain Nick Riewoldt at Etihad Stadium on Saturday night, with Greenwood out for one game for a similar offence against David Armitage.

Armitage will miss this weekend's meeting with Carlton, but will be available for the finals, after pleading guilty to rough conduct against the Kangaroos' Leigh Adams.

Fremantle's Nick Lower was suspended for three games, which will mean missing the opening two rounds next season, for forceful front-on contact against Collingwood's Thomas.

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