A pitch-invader from Thursday night’s AFL match between Geelong and Collingwood has asked fans to help him out after he found out he could be fined up to $50,000 dollars for his act of idiocy.
A topless Jesse Hayen leapt the fence at Perth’s Optus Stadium near the 50 metre marking, before he was quickly tackled by four security guards and led from the field.
Fines for pitch invasions have been increased in light of the coronavirus pandemic, with security wearing masks and gloves to grab the man in front of 22,000 fans.
Fans were not allowed to sit in the first two rows to avoid contact with any of the players, who were allowed to play despite being subject to a 14 day quarantine.
Hayen spoke to both Channel 7 News and Channel Nine News and said he thought the act was “pretty funny”, but was gobsmacked to learn of the fine.
“A lot of the boys think it’s pretty funny and all that,” Hayen said.
“I guess it is pretty funny, but, yeah, nah, I feel like a bit of a goose.”
JUST IN: Victorian Jesse Hayen says he’s sorry for invading pitch at Optus Stadium #AFLCatsPies, didn’t realise field was quarantine zone, doesn’t have $$ to pay up to $50k fine so asking public to help 😬 @9NewsPerth @9NewsAUS pic.twitter.com/6V9huvQIYs— Renae Henry (@renaehenry9) July 17, 2020
According to reports, Hayen said he can’t pay the fine and his friends have started a GoFund Me page in an attempt for the public help him out.
This is despite heavy criticism from fans on social media over the incident.
Controversy over massive crowds
Despite the pleas of health workers to consider, Perth Stadium hosted a crowd of over 22,000 on Thursday night for Collingwood’s clash with Geelong.
22,077 fans packed into Perth’s new stadium as the Magpies kicked away to a 22-point victory.
Fans weren’t allowed in the first two rows and there was plenty of social-distancing in place given the stadium capacity is 60,000.
The large crowd was allowed under Western Australia’s protocols, however it didn’t sit well with everyone.
Before the game, a poll of around 2000 West Australian nurses found 94 per cent were against the mass gathering, deeming it “too risky”.
With Chris Young