Published: Sun, May 13, 2018
Global News | By Blake Casey

Eagle Nic Naitanui fails to overturn one match ban

Eagle Nic Naitanui fails to overturn one match ban

Naitanui was handed a one-match ban for a risky tackle on Port Adelaide's Karl Amon and appealed the charge but after a lengthy hearing, the AFL Tribunal did not overturn the suspension.

After a tribunal hearing lasting nearly two hours, the three-man jury took longer than usual to find Naitanui guilty of his brutal tackle on Port Adelaide midfielder Karl Amon.

"If I was seeking to go out and hurt someone ..."

"I don't think I need to change anything", Naitanui said.

"It's a contact sport but I'll just have to keep playing the way I play; it's just unfortunate that [Karl] Amon who was the guy who was tackled in this incident, hit his head at the last little bit of it".

"It was just a tackle, I guess, and that's part of our game".

While West Coast argued Naitanui did not act carelessly in the tackle, and that the concussion could have been caused by a bunch of earlier incidents, Naitanui was left dumbstruck by the ruling, which cited he had a duty of care to a player about 30kg lighter than him.

Naitanui is 110 kg and Amon is around 80kg, a point that Gleeson asked the Eagles star about in his testimony.

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"I've tried my best to make sure that Amon didn't have my whole 110kg on his small frame", Naitanui said in his evidence, via a video link with Perth.

Port Adelaide doctor Mark Fisher said Amon showed signs of confusion, disorientation and memory loss.

Fisher stuck to his argument under cross-examination from Grace.

It is unclear whether Amon will be available for Saturday's Showdown against Adelaide.

The hearing was delayed by a day because Grace had been unavailable.

It was a controversial case, with tribunal chairman David Jones reminding the jury during the hearing that they were not to consider the widespread commentary surrounding Naitanui's charge.

He was charged bt the match review panel and after a two-hour hearing on Wednesday night the AFL Tribunal - consisting of Richard Loveridge, David Neitz and Shane Wakelin - upheld the one-match ban.

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