Essendon midfielder Zach Merrett was suspended from a game after being punched in the ribs by Carl Silvagni’s Jack Silvagni who sent the Blue to hospital.
The 22-year-old was struck with a closed fist and quickly left the field to go to hospital after injuring his lungs and fracturing a rib.
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But the youngster has no hard feelings for the moment despite the extent of the injury.
Speaking to Twitter, he wrote Monday afternoon, “Shame on seeing Zach get a week. Such incidents occur 20 to 30 times per game. He hit a tricky point and the result is just unlucky, no malicious intent whatsoever. “
It was a similar take to Mitch Robinson from Brisbane who said right after the match “Merretts hit happens more than 15 times a game!” (love types) Unfortunately, he has superhuman strength. ”
The same day, Channel 7 commentator James Brayshaw said the incident was “fairly harmless.”
Merrett’s ban came after match review officer Michael Christian viewed the move as careless contact with high impact and body contact.
But hawthorn legend Shane Crawford and the great Kane Horns of Port Adelaide both went wild during Merrett’s call for the ban.
Talking on WWOS ‘ Full time, Crawford said the MRO’s decision was wrong.
“This is absolute shit,” said Crawford. “Strong impact? Please. You are kidding. It is certainly not a high impact. Accidents happen in our game and unfortunately it is like that. It is not a high impact.”
He added that it was “seriously a love tap” and called on the Bombers to appeal.
Speaking about the SEN SA breakfast, Cornes was just as furious with the call.
“If you tell me that this incident had a major impact, you lost me, you absolutely lost me,” he said.
“It was a low impact, it was not a high impact. At worst, it should have been a fine. I understand that Jack has a serious problem but the contact was not high. I couldn’t believe Merrett had a week for this – another terrible call from MRO.
“It’s not a week-long reportable offense. I am OK if this decision comes back as a low or medium impact. To make it come back as a high impact… When you think of a high impact, you think of a really serious collision or a really serious hit. You don’t think of a tackle with a closed fist kicking.
“He actually came into contact with Silvagni in a tackle movement. Yes, his fist was clenched, but he left to attack him with a closed fist. That’s all it was, it was not worthy of a week’s suspension. “
Cornes also said it created a dangerous precedent for the game.
“If we’re going to delete Merrett for that, then are we going to delete Tom McDonald for a bump on Tom Stewart?”
“He knocks him behind the game, out of the ball, comes into contact with Stewart’s shoulder, Stewart breaks his collarbone and will probably miss six weeks. Should we then report to McDonald an incident that would occur 100 times per game because of the result? “
But not everyone is on the same side, David King telling Fox Footy’s First crack On Sunday a punch should start with a week-long suspension, while Gerard Whateley said the extent of the injury proves it was a high impact.
“Merrett hit Silvagni and left him with broken ribs, bruised lungs and in the hospital. I think he is extremely lucky. A week is not up to this, ”said Whateley.
Cornes replied that Andrew Gaff’s punch on Andrew Brayshaw was a punch. The West Coast star missed the 2018 Eagles Prime Minister’s Decision Maker after breaking Brayshaw’s jaw.