Investigation into former top AFL pick's 'extremely dangerous' act

Chris Young
·Sports Reporter
·3-min read
Former No.1 pick Paddy McCartin is under investigation after punching an opponent in the jaw while playing for Sydney in the VFL last weekend. Pictures: Fox Footy/Getty Images
Former No.1 pick Paddy McCartin is under investigation after punching an opponent in the jaw while playing for Sydney in the VFL last weekend. Pictures: Fox Footy/Getty Images

Former No.1 draft pick Paddy McCartin is under investigation after an ugly incident in the VFL over the weekend.

McCartin, whose AFL career with St Kilda was derailed by a series of concussions, was seen punching Geelong opponent Aaron Black in the jaw during their match on Saturday.

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The key forward was signed by the Sydney Swans VFL side, with the 25-year-old hoping to prove he can still cut it at AFL level.

Those hopes could hit a snag however, as footage first obtained by Fox Footy showed McCartin throwing a punch at Black in the opening minutes of their match.

A dazed Black stumbled to the ground but was later cleared of concussion, however the former North Melbourne defender did suffer a swollen jaw.

AFL commentator Stephen Quartermain took to Twitter after seeing footage of the incident, describing it as 'extremely dangerous'.

"This seems to be completely out of character for Paddy McCartin," he wrote. 

"Having said that…it’s an extremely dangerous act and a hefty suspension is needed."

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McCartin, who was selected first by the Saints in the 2014 draft, played just 35 games in five years after a series of head knocks an injuries prevented him from playing.

Though he showed glimpses of immense potential, the repeated concussions ultimately led to St Kilda de-listing him in 2019.

McCartin admitted he'd considered retiring from all levels of football soon after he was de-listed, but was given the all-clear to make a comeback with the Swans in 2021.

AFL admits umpire got key call wrong

The AFL has admitted that umpires erred by denying Jeremy Cameron a mark and shot at victory in the final seconds of Geelong's two-point loss to Sydney.

Cameron held onto a skied ball with six seconds remaining on the clock during Saturday night's dramatic SCG clash.

But the whistleblowers called play on, wrongly ruling the Sherrin had not travelled 15 metres in the Cats' forward line, and the Swans held on.

"Upon video review this morning we have deemed the ball to have travelled the required distance," AFL umpires boss Dan Richardson told reporters on Sunday morning.

"And should have been paid a mark."

Geelong coach Chris Scott was unimpressed after umpires missed a crucial whistle that could have given the Cats a chance to beat Sydney on Saturday. (Photo by Cameron Spencer/Getty Images)
Geelong coach Chris Scott was unimpressed after umpires missed a crucial whistle that could have given the Cats a chance to beat Sydney on Saturday. (Photo by Cameron Spencer/Getty Images)

The Sydney-Geelong game ended with James Rowbottom being tackled amid appeals for holding the ball by Geelong players.

However, Richardson ticked off the umpires' call to not penalise the Sydney midfielder.

Geelong coach Chris Scott didn't want or need clarification from the league regarding Cameron's non-mark, noting on Saturday night that it obviously a mistake.

"I looked at the vision and it's clear," Scott said.

"But it's a different perspective for the umpire, he can't go back and replay the vision. They're tough calls.

"I suspect they'll have a look at it and go, 'the Swans made some blues, the Cats made some blues after that then we might have made some blues as well'.

"That's a split-second call and if he made the wrong one, I think we should say 'isn't it surprising that doesn't happen more often given how difficult the job is?'."

With AAP

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