St Kilda have confirmed Paddy Ryder and Bradley Hill were involved in a bar altercation but denied reports the star pair were left out of the AFL team last week for disciplinary reasons.
The Saints on Monday night said Ryder and Hill were part of a “verbal exchange and disagreement” with fellow patrons at a venue in Mordialloc.
A third player was also present.
The incident happened on the Saturday following the Friday night defeat to Essendon in round 14.
Ryder and Hill both played in that match but missed the round 15 clash with Sydney at the SCG last Saturday night.
Ryder was listed as “managed” and Hill was sidelined due to “personal reasons”.
The Saints said reports the pair were left out for disciplinary reasons are “incorrect”.
“Following a verbal exchange and disagreement with fellow patrons, all three left the venue without a fight ensuing,” the club said in a statement.
“As previously communicated by the club, this incident had no impact on selection, with Ryder missing due to ongoing management and Hill for personal reasons which meant that he was unable to train on both Monday and Tuesday and not in a condition to take his place in the side against the Swans.”
The Saints (8-6) have slipped to 10th on the ladder following three straight losses.
Saturday’s 51-point loss was St Kilda’s worst of the season, with the heavy defeat putting the heat on coach Brett Ratten.
Ryder and Hill are two of St Kilda’s most important players, and it remains to be seen whether they will be slotted back into the side for Friday night’s crunch clash with Carlton at Marvel Stadium.