'Not on': Fans slammed for 'spitting' at ex-AFL star and his son

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Seen here, former Port Adelaide player Tom Rockliff and his son at the Sunday AFL game at the MCG.
Former Port Adelaide player Tom Rockliff says he and his son were spat at by a number of Carlton supporters after Sunday's AFL game at the MCG. Pic: Twitter

Former AFL player Tom Rockliff has revealed the disgusting aftermath to what should have been a special father-son moment with his little boy at the MCG on Sunday.

Rockliff and his son were cheering on Port Adelaide, whose late surge was not enough to haul in Carlton in what proved to be a three-point thriller on Easter Sunday.

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Charlie Curnow's fifth goal late in the final quarter helped the Blues hold off their dogged opponents for a 14.10 (94) to 13.13 (91) victory at the MCG.

Rockliff - a two-time best-and-fairest winner at the Brisbane Lions before finishing his career with Port - was cheering on the Power from the Shane Warne Stand.

In what was the first time the 208-game midfielder had taken his son to watch a match live at the MCG, it was supposed to be a special occasion for father and son.

However, Rockliff says he'd have reservations about taking his boy to a game in the future after revealing that they were spat at by a number of Carlton fans as they left the ground.

“What a way to be let down,” Rockliff wrote. “Carlton supporters spitting at me when I am walking home with my son is not on.

“Passion is great but let’s remember it’s sport.”

Speaking to foxfooty.com.au on Sunday night, Rockliff said the unsavoury incident tarnished what should have been a special moment for his young son.

“I was cheering hard for Port Adelaide – you can probably hear it in my voice, my voice is gone – and I probably pushed the boundary (with my banter),” Rockliff told foxfooty.com.au.

“I’ve got no issue with anything that gets said. But after it’s said and done and you walk out getting spat at, it’s pretty disrespectful – not only to me, but it leaves a sour taste in my son’s mouth as well.

“I’ve always been at the footy and he’s been up in the stands with his mother watching and the first opportunity that I got to take him to the MCG – the colosseum of AFL footy – and for him to leave with that experience is really disappointing.

Port fall just short of miracle comeback against Carlton

Rockliff and his son almost witnessed what would have been one of the great comebacks after Port stormed back into the contest, having trailed by as many as 50 points moments before halftime.

Despite trailing by 49 points at halftime, when they had just four goals on the board, the Power sensed they still had a pulse.

They kicked six goals to one in a third-quarter surge that included two long bombs from Ryan Burton in his 100th game.

Zak Butters (32 disposals), Darcy Byrne-Jones (26) and Connor Rozee (24) all helped drag Port back into the contest and they got within a kick when Mitch Georgiades nailed the quick reply to Curnow's late goal.

The Power had a chance to snatch a remarkable victory with one minute left as Karl Amon took a set shot from outside 50 metres.

Pictured here, Port Adelaide's Karl Amon looks dejected after the loss against Carlton on Easter Sunday.
Port's Karl Amon came up just short in what would have been a game-clinching kick against Carlton on Easter Sunday. Pic: Getty

But it was rushed through for a behind in a mad scramble on the line and the Blues hung on.

"We knew coming into the game Carlton's second halves have been quite different to their first halves, and I'm sure they'd be aware of that," Port coach Ken Hinkley said.

"We thought if we could get a bit of scoreboard pressure going we'd still be in the game.

"It seems a bit silly at 50 points down but that's what we believed.

"We knew the opportunities, if we could keep going, would maybe appear later for us but we didn't want to be 50 points down."

The result was ultimately Carlton's fourth win in five games and left Port in a 0-5 hole, their worst-ever start to an AFL season.

with AAP

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