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Revised head high contact rule


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It's reported in today's Age newspaper (possibly paywalled) that there will be a stricter interpretation of head high contact in season 2022. Most significantly, "the potential to cause injury in certain circumstances must be factored into the determination of the impact, rather than “strong consideration” being given to it...The result of this change will be that, where there is careless conduct that is high contact and has the potential to cause injury, a medium impact classification will usually apply, and a one-match suspension will be the minimum sanction applied.”   

At last it appears that the risk of the incident causing injury will become relevant rather than just the outcome. In other words, if you bump a player and there is a head knock, expect a penalty whether or not the player bumped was injured. 

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The same principle should apply for every incident.

The action should always be the focus of scrutiny not the result to the player on the receiving end.

If a similar action is deliberate and or malicious it shouldn't matter if it is against a player who ends up in hospital or getting BOG. It's the same action.

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I remember in mid year game against Brisbane Tommy Sparrow cleverly put his frame in Daniel Rich's way to create space for a team mate. Rich went down like shot, got the free kick and Sparrow was sighted for a bump. He got a reprimand. 

According to the press release a 1 week suspension will now 'usually apply' in this scenario.

And it's nonsense.

Part of being an AFL footballer is knowing how to protect yourself.

Now that all the onus will be on the player bumping the knowledge of how to look after yourself becomes less and less important, which has every chance to result in more accidents than before.

No one wants to see the violence and thuggery of the 70's, 80's and beyond but preventative measures have to be applied to both sides.

The same thing is happening with sling tackles. Players are so keen to draw free kicks they are willing to get slung. They aren't worried about getting a concussion if they can get a free kick.

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In regards to concussion the AFL need to stop rewarding players with frees that get hit high when they choose to lead with their head. Doggies will be in trouble if this ever comes in.
 

Jack McRae free in the GF against Viney - in 3rd Quarter (centre clearance just after the Brown goal) was a prime example of this. McRae was low and just ploughed his head at Vineys knees to draw a free. Unnecessary risk to his head. If no free he would be less likely to do it. 

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24 minutes ago, Pulp Fritschon said:

In regards to concussion the AFL need to stop rewarding players with frees that get hit high when they choose to lead with their head. Doggies will be in trouble if this ever comes in.
 

Jack McRae free in the GF against Viney - in 3rd Quarter (centre clearance just after the Brown goal) was a prime example of this. McRae was low and just ploughed his head at Vineys knees to draw a free. Unnecessary risk to his head. If no free he would be less likely to do it. 

Isn't this rule already in place?

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Is it to early to say that this will fall way short of the mark w.r.t consistency, the MRPs role and current operator and the whole bloody system which is ripe with inequity and favoritism? 

I still think the MRP matrix needs be clarified w.r.t the impact. It needs to have a category which covers the scenario where the player is injured and can no longer be part of the game - so impact grades can be low/medium/high (used when no actual injury has occurred) and critical (which is where injury has actually occurred). So if you bump someone off the ball and they are not injured or concussed, then its one of low/medium/high. If they are injured and need to be subbed out of the game, then it is automatic critical and that is 120% of impact= high or something to that effect. Or completely remove the 'actual' injury or lack thereof out of the equation, so if you elect to bump off the ball and head contact is made, irrespective of injury, automatic 2 week suspension. The more black and white this can be, the better for all (except the media and ensuing news cycle of course)

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