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That is magnificent. Getting pissed as a public service. Thanks Eddie.Eddie McGuire partying at a Gold Coast nightclub early Sunday morning may have ruffled a few feathers in footy circles — but it’s the Collingwood president’s excuse that’s raised a few eyebrows.thewest.com.au
Eddie McGuire’s eyebrow raising excuse for partying at Gold Coast nightclub
Mon, 21 September 2020
A defiant Eddie McGuire says he was engaging in a reconnaissance mission in attending a Gold Coast nightspot on Saturday night.
McGuire was snapped at The Pink Flamingo, after he went out with his 19-year-old son, and has claimed that he was gathering information about how hospitality can operate under COVID-19 restrictions as Victoria endeavours to re-open.
“As you are well aware, I do a few different things in my life, including being on the board of Visit Victoria, and … speak extensively to people in the restaurant and hospitality industry about how we get Victoria going again,” McGuire said on Triple M on Monday morning.
“(That’s) part of what I was looking at the other night and how that all works.
“What I did was I booked a dinner on Saturday night – the last night that I’ve got, because the next four weeks I’m flat out doing Hot Seat and hosting and all sorts of different things. I went through the procedure on how you go about doing things if you are outside the hub.”
McGuire was slammed by Hawthorn counterpart and fellow league coronavirus cabinet member Jeff Kennett, and took a shot back.
“Is that the bloke who said that people act like ‘bogongs’?,” he said.
“That’s how in touch Jeff is on things at times, as opposed to ‘bogans’.”
McGuire affirmed that he is not part of the AFL or Collingwood hubs, which would have meant he would not be permitted to go out to such a venue.
“So just for clarity, I’m not in the Collingwood hub. It was (a reconnaissance mission), pretty much,” he said.
He said that he had been impressed by elements such as QR codes for check-in, bathroom procedures, temperature testing and seating allocations.
“(The people I was with) said, look, well, the best place we can show you is this place called the Pink Flamingo,” he said.
“There’s a photo of me, that was coming out of the place where these guys came over, someone took a photo, then I said ‘guys, please separate’, and then I took a photo with people on the way out the door. But don’t worry about that situation – it worked really well.
“My point is, the key part to all that was the social distancing, but also the coding on the way through
“The social tracing really worked well and there’s a real opportunity for us in Victoria to really have a look at what’s going on.”
Earlier Hawthorn president Jeff Kennett slammed McGuire after he was spotted partying on the Gold Coast.
Mr Kennett said it was “a hell of a contradiction’’ to be partying while players and officials were locked down.
“You can’t have one rule for one group of people and another rule for others,’’ he said.
“It looks silly. He probably hasn’t broken any Queensland laws but he has put himself again at the centre of attention where this issue of conflict of interest continues to raise its head. “While he is out there jiving at the Pink Flamingo, his players and coaches are in a hub breathing stale air.”
The nightclub bills its “high-end’’ Saturday experience as something that “will captivate partygoers into the wee hours of the morning’’. He posed for photos which were later posted on social media.
“I took my son and a couple of my crew from Hot Seat out for dinner and the people over at the restaurant said ‘come over and have a drink’,’’ McGuire said.
“My boy is 19, he hasn’t been out for the best part of six months so I took him across and bought him a beer.’’
The AFL last night said McGuire did not have a case to answer because he was not living in any of the league’s dedicated hubs.
After completing two weeks of quarantine, McGuire has based himself in Queensland until after the AFL Grand Final and will be part of the league’s All-Australian function on Wednesday.
He has previously criticised Richmond players Sydney Stack and Callum-Coleman Jones for breaking several league protocols in a fight outside a Gold Coast strip club.
“The idiot soup kicked in on them and they decided it was a good idea to break every rule they’ve been told for the last three months and as a result they got a full whack,” he said.
The Tigers duo were handed a 10-game suspension and Richmond was fined $100,000.
But McGuire said many footy identities, including AFL chief executive Gillon McLachlan, were staying on the Gold Coast without being subject to strict hub rules.
“I’ve just come off the beach,’’ he said.
“There are a whole heap of people, like Gill, not in a hub.
“I’m up here basically as a television host.’’