Demons coach quarantined in major scare ahead of AFL grand final

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Simon Goodwin, pictured here hugging Trent Rivers after the Melbourne Demons' victory over Geelong.
Simon Goodwin hugs Trent Rivers after the Melbourne Demons' victory over Geelong. (Photo by Michael Willson/AFL Photos via Getty Images)

The Melbourne Demons have been forced to quarantine coach Simon Goodwin from the playing group after he woke up feeling ill on Friday morning.

Goodwin was scheduled to hold a press conference before the team's training session at Joondalup on Friday morning, but was told to stay in the team hotel as a precaution.

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Assistant coach Adam Yze also fell ill and was told to remain at the team's hotel.

A number of Geelong players were struck down by sickness in the lead-up to their 83-point preliminary-final loss to the Demons.

Melbourne are taking every precaution to ensure the same situation doesn't occur to them.

"He (Goodwin) woke up a little bit crook, both him and Yze," Demons assistant coach Troy Chaplin said.

"They'll be fine come tomorrow, but the club didn't want to take any risks, and the doc just said to stay back.

"That's always a concern (that it could spread), but at the moment it's just those two boys who have woken up a little bit ill.

"All the players are going to be alright today, and they're all here.

"Given the stakes at hand, it's important we don't have something that sweeps through the whole club, so the doctors are just playing it really safe."

How gambling saga shaped Simon Goodwin as a coach

On Thursday, Goodwin's former coach Neil Craig opened up about the gambling scandal that shaped the person he is today.

The AFL fined Goodwin $40,000, half of it suspended, for betting on an AFL game in 2006.

The dual Crows premiership player and gun midfielder had been exposed as a gambling addict, and part of the AFL penalty also involved Goodwin undergoing rehabilitation.

Anyone who has had close contact with an addict will attest that they are master manipulators.

And Goodwin could have been just another cosseted AFL star, saying what he knew everyone wanted to hear. Instead, he asked for help.

"The key thing ... is that Simon took ownership of his situation and took accountability for it," Craig told AAP.

Simon Goodwin, pictured here addressing his players during the Demons' clash with Geelong.
Simon Goodwin addresses his players during the Demons' clash with Geelong. (Photo by Dylan Burns/AFL Photos via Getty Images)

"He was happy - and sought - to get help. Now that sounds pretty simple, but very few people will do that.

"In other words they'll play the blame game or 'woe is me'.

"But I remember really clearly one particular meeting where Simon had a discussion with me and he said 'Craigy, I need some help with this and I want to be able to change my behaviours and ways for a whole range of reasons'."

Craig said has no doubt that what Goodwin went through then stood him in good stead for becoming a senior coach.

"In terms of the extension of that into coaching, he'll have great empathy for other players he'll get exposed to in his coaching journey," Craig said.

"It's not a smooth path, that people can change; the role and the importance of people accepting responsibility and asking for help.

"He'll be able to walk in their shoes because he's been in their shoes in those sorts of situations."

with AAP

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