AFL 2024, Harley Reid AFL ban upheld after MRO Tribunal appeal, breaking news, tackle on Darcy Wilson, Rhylee West fights suspension for bump on Jeremy Howe

West Coast midfielder Harley Reid has learned his fate at the AFL Tribunal.

Reid and the Eagles, who fought a ban handed down by a match review official on Sunday, upheld his two-game suspension on Tuesday night.

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The 19-year-old will miss West Coast’s games against North Melbourne at Optus Stadium (Round 13) and Essendon at Marvel Stadium (Round 15).

On Sunday night, MRO Michael Christian handed the first-year sensation a two-game ban for a dangerous tackle on St Kilda rookie Darcy Wilson, rendering Reid ineligible for this year’s Rising Star award.

The incident was assessed as careless behaviour, high impact and heavy contact, resulting in a two match suspension. West Coast’s legal experts argued that a medium impact assessment was more appropriate in an attempt to reduce the suspension to one game.

Reid’s expected hearing was due to start at 18:00 AEST (4:00 pm AWST) but was postponed due to the lengthy questioning of Rhylee West.

The burgeoning ball-winner did not testify on Tuesday night as West Coast deemed it unnecessary.

Sally Flynn (AFL) specifically used “rotation”, “lifting” and “throwing” to describe Reid’s tackle on Wilson on Saturday.

Flynn said Reid used excessive force and did not try to slow the momentum of the attack.

David Grace (West Coast) compared Reid’s clash with Charlie Cameron on Jake Lever (Round 5; rated medium impact), Jaeger O’Meara on Charlie Spargo (Round 9; Medium) and Tom Barrasso on Michael Walters (Round 6 ; middle) in an attempt to convince the court that Reid’s act was nothing more serious.

After much deliberation, the chairman of the tribunal considered that the assessment of the impact of the MRO was correct – the sanction remained at two matches.

“Reid reasonably acknowledged that his confrontation with Darcy Wilson was dangerous, involved excessive force, and could have caused Wilson head or neck injury,” the decision said.

“We believe there is a significant potential for injury. We agree that Reid is a young first-year player who tried to do his best, but his struggle was underappreciated. It was a poorly executed tackle.

“It was a very unique clash. Reid is very different from the four cases of unsafe handling relied upon by Reid.”

The statement continues: “Reid used excessive and substantial force to lift Wilson, spin him and throw him back to the ground.

“It’s lucky that he landed the way he did. Had he landed differently, the outcome for Wilson could have been a serious head or neck injury.

“We are satisfied that the charge of gross misconduct has been properly classified.”

Fox Footy pundit and double flag winner David King took a close look at the fight on Saturday’s commentary.

“That’s a tackle we’ve got to take out of the game,” he said after Reid took down Wilson in forceful fashion.

“It’s a loop. (His) head hits the ground — that’s all we don’t want. I’m sorry.

“Rebounding, action — that’s a problem for him.

“You have to choose your path as an industry. I think we’ve made it clear that (rebounding) is a no-no and unfortunately it looks like the two rising star favorites (Reid and Sam Darcy) are going to be out of favor this weekend.”

18-year-old Wilson – who is considered one of the betting favorites for the rising star, with Reid and Darcy ineligible – played the rest of the match.

Earlier on Tuesday, the Western Bulldogs challenged forward Rhylee West’s one-match ban after he collided with Collingwood defender Jeremy Howe on Friday night.

West received a one-match ban for his action, with the MRO ruling it was careless conduct, medium strike, hard contact.

Also suspended last Friday was West’s team-mate Darcy in the Dogs front row, who has since accepted a two-match ban after punching back-moving Brayden Maynard.

The 23-year-old attacker’s hearing began at 4.30pm AEST and concluded at 6.45pm AEST.

West has pleaded not guilty to the charge of disorderly conduct. The Bulldogs argued West’s conduct was not unreasonable in the circumstances, with the forward claiming he intended to tackle Collingwood’s Brayden Maynard before realizing the Magpies would not take possession.

Sally Flynn, representing the AFL, said the “resulting action (against Howe) was unreasonable in the circumstances”, despite West’s claim he intended to deal with Maynard.

Flynn said West’s actions “could have resulted in a concussion or a broken jaw.”

Adrian Anderson (Bulldogs) compared West’s contact to Nic Newman’s tackle on Melbourne’s Alex Neal-Bullen in Round 9, which resulted in a fine.

After an hour of deliberation, the court overturned West’s one-game ban. He will be available to play this Thursday against the Brisbane Lions.

Originally published as ‘Excessive and substantial’: Harley Reid fails to overturn two-game ban

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