Dangerfield free, Setterfield banned
IT came down to a matter of inches but a fortunate Patrick Dangerfield has avoided AFL suspension and remains eligible for the Brownlow Medal.
The Geelong midfield ace has escaped with a fine after throwing a couple of forearms while being held by GWS tagger Matt de Boer in Saturday’s game at GMHBA Stadium.
Dangerfield first collected de Boer in the midriff, doubling him over.
Then he flung back his elbow and it brushed against the head of de Boer, who – luckily for Dangerfield – was still bent over.
Dangerfield was fined $2,000 for the former incident and the latter was deemed to be of insufficient force and did not attract a sanction.
“I don’t want to delve into hypotheticals,” match review officer Michael Christian replied when asked if Dangerfield had been lucky.
“The reality is, the contact was minimal.”
The decision means Dangerfield will be available for the annual Easter Monday blockbuster against Hawthorn.
But the bad news keeps coming for winless Carlton, with Will Setterfield handed a two-match ban for a sling tackle that concussed Gold Coast opponent Will Powell.
Meanwhile, North Melbourne’s Luke McDonald was offered a one-match suspension for a clumsy late hit while attempting to spoil Adelaide’s Chayce Jones, who was also knocked out.
The pair could take their chances at the tribunal after Collingwood’s Mason Cox and Richmond’s Dustin Martin both had successful hearings over the past fortnight.
Christian, who is now solely responsible for determining the initial sanctions after an AFL overhaul, dismissed criticism of his decisions while noting he was limited to video footage and medical reports in making his determinations.
“The match review function is separate to the tribunal function,” he told reporters on Monday.
“I see (successful challenges as) the process working.”
Cats skipper Joel Selwood, teammate Esava Ratugolea, Essendon’s Tom Bellchambers, Richmond’s Kamdyn McIntosh and North Melbourne duo Jack Ziebell and Ben Cunnington all copped fines from the review of round four.
Christian also handed fines to Richmond’s Tom Lynch and Port Adelaide’s Dan Houston and Dougal Howard for engaging in a melee.
© AAP 2019