Dangerfield Cops One Week Ban
Geelong superstar and reigning Brownlow Medallist Patrick Dangerfield has been offered a one week suspension from the AFL Match Review Panel for his tackle on Carlton’s Mathew Kreuzer.
The Cats’ midfielder’s hopes of winning the league’s most prestigious individual award for the second year in a row were dashed on Monday night when the MRP ruled that Dangerfield’s tackle was careless conduct with medium impact to the head. As a result of the crunching tackle Kreuzer suffered from the effects of concussion and took no further part in the match.
Dangerfield’s suspension comes amid debate in recent weeks that ‘star’ players and big name players were protected from the same sanctions as other players by the MRP and the AFL. So far this season big name players such as Trent Cotchin, Lance Franklin, and fellow Brownlow favourite Dustin Martin have escaped sanction for reported offences.
This is the first time in Dangerfield’s illustrious career that the 196 games superstar has been suspended. The one match sanction rules him out of this Friday night’s big clash against rivals Sydney at Simmonds Stadium but if Geelong choose to take the matter to the tribunal and lose they risk losing their champion midfielder for the following week’s top four battle against Richmond.
Geelong is currently weighing up whether challenging the ban is worth the risk and they have until Tuesday morning to inform the AFL if they wish to appeal Dangerfield’s ban.
Due to Dangerfield’s reputation as a fair player and good person his suspension has once again raised the debate surrounding the criteria for the Brownlow Medal, specifically the “fairest” aspect of the best and fairest award. Some experts have said players should not be ineligible for the medal if they are rubbed out for minor offences.
As a result of Dangerfield’s suspension Richmond’s Dustin Martin is now seen as a big favourite to win the medal, and if he were to win there would no doubt be some controversy due to Martin escaping suspension earlier this season for similarly minor offences.