Saint Ben Long will miss three weeks for his careless bump that left Dockers big man Sean Darcy concussed.
Long pleaded guilty to rough conduct against Darcy, who played no further part in the Dockers’ dramatic win, after being referred directly to the Tribunal.
Jack Rush, the QC representing St Kilda, argued Darcy was contesting the ball from his knees after changing his body position “in the space of a second” and highlighted a similar bump by Long in the third quarter of the Dockers clash.
On that occasion, Rush argued Long was able to safely bump the player and said it was “in a split second” that the Darcy incident went wrong.
He said Long had eyes for the ball during the Darcy clash and added the fact the Dockers big man weighed 105kg compared to Long’s 81kg.
But Jeff Gleeson, the AFL QC, said Darcy was in a “vulnerable” position and could have been seriously injured by Long’s bump.
“(Long) sees that Darcy is low, that he’s wide open and that he’s vulnerable. He enters the contest knowing all of these matters,” Gleeson said.
“He also moves into the contest with acceleration.
“It has to be said there was even the potential for worse consequences.”
According to the medical report submitted by the Dockers, Darcy was immediately treated for concussion and failed a HIA assessment.
He sustained mild neck pain on his right side and concussion symptoms.
Jurors Shane Wakelin, David Neitz and Stephen Jurica took almost 30 minutes to determine Long’s penalty.
He’ll miss matches against Adelaide, Port Adelaide and a yet to be determined opponent in round 9.