Norm Smith Medallist
- Mar 1, 2011
- AFL Club
- West Coast
- Other Teams
- Leeds United
Yeah, it's absolutely no excuse, but if someone like Gaff (the last guy in our side I'd pick to belt someone before last week) is capable of responding in this way due to close checking, whether he was aiming for the chest or not, makes me think that anyone could be pushed to do it.I genuinely believe that Umpiring has a role to play in these type of incidents. The amount of off-the ball niggle, pushing, bumping, jumper punching and associated sh*t that goes unpunished must surely frustrate even the most level headed players.
Solution - Use your whistle umps. Stop the coaching, all this "No holding, no blocking" from the umpires before they bounce or throw it in just shits me.
Stamp out all that niggle and maybe, just maybe some of these acts of random idiot violence might not occur on the field.
I reckon it's absolutely inevitable that someone, somewhere will lash out when pushed and pushed and pushed. Now I'm not saying Gaff was or wasn't, nor am I saying he has an excuse for what he did. What I am saying is that I'd be surprised if incidents like this would happen if the umpires policed the off the ball stuff that, in my opinion, they aren't doing now.
It needs to be a combined effort of closer umpire monitoring and giving frees for off the ball checking (scragging, holding, bumping to block runs etc) and punishing any type of strike with at least a week off.