Swans coach John Longmire has taken aim at the AFL's score review system after two controversial calls saw Sydney fall short against Carlton in a thriller on Friday night. Carlton defeated the 11.8 (74) to 9.14 (68) in an epic during their elimination final in front of 90,000 fans.
However, Blues wingman Blake Acres' final moment lunge was just enough to decide the game for Carlton even though not everyone was convinced with the score review decision. With a few minutes to go, Acres dived at the Sherrin and the goal umpire claimed the Blues star touched the ball with his fingertip.
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The decision was tight with the commentators not convinced there was enough evidence to overturn the soft on field decision. The final verdict was that Acres had managed to touch the ball before it went through. Carlton held on to win the game in front of 90,000 adoring fans.
Longmire didn't want to question the decision right after the game having not seen enough replays. "When I'm on the bench, you don't get to see replays like you guys in the media," Longmire said post-match. "I didn't know ... I still haven't seen it."
However, with the Swans' season over, Longmire was critical and when asked if the score review system was good enough he replied: "Clearly not".
Longmire also hinted at Sydney's contrasting score review fortunes when he hoped for changes to the system. "We've been on both sides of the fence, haven't we?" he said. "We spend a fair bit trying to get things right at club land."
Last month, the AFL apologised after an Adelaide goal was disallowed against Sydney when replays showed the ball did not hit the post. Sydney won the game by one point and it killed the Crows' finals chances.
AFL fans were divided over the controversial call in the final minutes, but plenty of Adelaide fans pointed at the irony of a score review system call all but ending the Swans' chances of advancing in 2023.
Ironic goal technology denied Swans. Adelaide supporters very happy.
— markedw (@Markedw) September 8, 2023
How hard would it be to introduce hot spot the same as we have in cricket, if we cant do that then scrap the entire system, it's become a joke, this year we have seen many decisions that were dubious, tonight was another one, Petraccas goal was the worst.
— beneficiary42 (@beneficiary42) September 8, 2023
Score review costs the Swans. Who would have thought?
— Stephen O'Loughlin (@saol16) September 8, 2023
There's no way that was touched
— Wayne Alan (@SilverBird81) September 8, 2023
I didn’t think Acres touched it, we will never know.
— Gary Anderson (@aptwasteoftime) September 8, 2023
Sydney Swans rue missed chances against Carlton
Nick Blakey had to leave the ground because of the high hit from Jack Martin in the first term and then returned to the game. But while Blakey was being assessed for concussion, it left the Swans one player short on the bench.
Longmire wants the ability for the sub to be activated and then taken out of the game again if the original player returns to the field.
"That's a common-sense way of dealing with it. That's part of the evolution of the game," he said. "I understand why it's not there yet. We've come a long way. It could be looked at over summer - that and goal review."
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