GEELONG captain Joel Selwood's weekend spat with sibling Adam puts him at risk of suspension and possibly out of Brownlow Medal contention for successive years.
To remain in Brownlow contention, Selwood must challenge the misconduct charge, for alleged unreasonable contact to an injured player, at the tribunal tonight. A negative result would sideline him for the Cats' match against St Kilda on Friday night.
Collingwood football and coaching strategist Rodney Eade said last night he was shocked at the verdict and urged the Cats to challenge, but
Geelong coach Chris Scott, said an appeal was a huge risk.
"The system's really stacked against you," he said on Fox Footy's On The Couch . "Our position is that if there's any chance he will get a week for that, which is what we'd risk if we appealed it, then it's not worth taking. If we choose not to appeal, it doesn't mean we agree with the decision."
The brothers were pursuing a loose ball near the boundary line in Friday night's West Coast-Geelong match when the incident occurred. Joel got to the ball first and was then bumped by Adam, of the Eagles. After both fell to the ground, Joel got up and shoved his prostrate brother as he ran back towards play.
The panel deemed Joel Selwood's retaliation to his older brother's bump was reckless and worthy of an 80-point penalty, which was inflated to 112 due to his bad record. A guilty plea would reduce that penalty to a reprimand and 84 carry-over points, which would make him ineligible for the Brownlow but ensure his availability against the Saints.
Panel chairman Mark Fraser said Joel Selwood could not have been sure Adam had not been hurt in their preceding clash, and therefore should not have made any subsequent contact.
"[Joel] doesn't know if [Adam] is severely injured — he may have a neck injury, or broken ribs — and that action can be potentially dangerous," Fraser told the AFL website. "We don't believe he has intentionally pushed an injured player, but he should know that with that collision that there's the potential for an injury to be there."
Fraser said, that the incident involved the Cats captain's older brother would unduly skew public opinion. "If it was any other player than his brother you wouldn't have any issues with [Joel being charged], but because it's the brothers, it makes a bit of a difference to the way people view it," he said.
Geelong must decide whether to challenge the decision by 11am today.
The behind-play hit on Hawthorn's Cyril Rioli has resulted in a two-match ban for Port Adelaide's Hamish Hartlett. A guilty plea would cut the Power midfielder's ban to one match. No charges were laid over the resulting grappling between players.
Carlton midfielder Mitch Robinson's match-day report for striking Brisbane's Ryan Harwood was withdrawn due to insufficient impact. Robinson was, however, fined $2400 for wrestling Harwood, and can cut the penalty to $1800 if he accepts the charge.
Western Bulldogs defender Ryan Hargrave has been offered a one-match ban for striking Richmond's Daniel Jackson off play on Sunday.
Essendon's Nathan Lovett-Murray was cleared of forceful front-on contact against North Melbourne's Lachie Hansen because the panel felt he had no alternative. An incident involving Geelong's Steve Johnson was not considered serious enough to warrant formal scrutiny.
■ Joel Selwood (Geel), unnecessary or unreasonable contact to injured player Adam Selwood (WC): one match, reprimand with guilty plea.
■ Harley Bennell (GC), negligent umpire contact: $1200 fine, $900 with guilty plea.
■ Mitch Robinson (Carl), wrestling Ryan Harwood (BL): $2400 fine, $1800 with guilty plea.
■ Hamish Hartlett (PA), striking Cyril Rioli (Haw): two matches, one match with guilty plea.
■ Ryan Hargrave (WB), striking Daniel Jackson (Rich): two matches, one match with guilty plea.