AAP AFL

AFL suspends Greene for preliminary final

By AAP Newswire

The stakes will rise sharply for GWS star Toby Greene when he returns to the AFL tribunal.

The Giants are certain to challenge Greene's one-game ban for what the AFL terms "making unnecessary or unreasonable contact to the eye region" of Brisbane midfielder Lachie Neale.

The turnaround is uncomfortably quick for Greene and GWS after he had been referred directly to the tribunal last Monday on a charge of serious misconduct against Western Bulldogs star Marcus Bontempelli.

That also involved incidents in which Greene had made contact with Bontempelli's face.

But Greene pleaded guilty and was fined $7500, freeing him to play a starring role in Saturday night's epic semi-final win over the Lions.

This time, unless the Giants are successful, they will be without one of their prime movers for Saturday's preliminary final against Collingwood at the MCG.

Despite nothing being confirmed on Sunday night, Geelong will also go to the tribunal to challenge Tom Hawkins' one-match striking ban.

Like Greene, Hawkins is one of his team's lynch pins.

The tribunal will most likely hear the Hawkins case on Monday and the Greene charge on Tuesday.

Match reviewer Michael Christian stressed there was no link between Greene's Bontempelli charge and the Neale case.

"With all the available evidence, we determined that there was unnecessary and unreasonable contact with Toby's hand to Lachie Neale's eye region," Christian said.

"This is totally in isolation of the incident from last week."

The Greene charge was graded as intentional, low impact and high contact.

The initial TV footage did not clearly show it was Greene who left Neale holding his face in pain after a scrimmage.

But Christian said they were able to look at several angles, as well as highlight vision and slow it down.

"Certainly, on the balance of probabilities, it was Toby's hand," he said.

Christian was asked for his opinion about Greene fronting the tribunal in successive weeks on similar, unusual charges.

"Nothing surprises me, but ... my role here is to look at an incident," he said.

"It doesn't matter who is involved."

Christian added the Neale incident was different to the Bontempelli case.

"Last week, there were a number of actions that constituted a charge of serious misconduct," he said.

Despite the brutality of Saturday's semi-final, only three charges were laid, with Greene being the sole player facing suspension.

Lions forward Charlie Cameron can accept a $2000 fine for rough conduct against Zac Willliams.

Brisbane captain Dayne Zorko was charged with striking Shane Mumford and fined $1500.

There was plenty of debate around the attention that the Giants paid to Cameron's elbow injury, with umpire Shaun Ryan at one point heard warning Adam Kennedy.

Brisbane hard nut Nick Robertson was also in the spotlight for bumping Lachie Whitfield, who had hurt his back.

"There were numerous incidents regarding last night but, in the end, we felt there were only three charges," Christian said.