Demons to challenge Pickett suspension at AFL tribunal

Anna Harrington |

Kysaiah Pickett has been handed his third ban since the start of last season.
Kysaiah Pickett has been handed his third ban since the start of last season.

Melbourne will challenge Kysaiah Pickett’s one-match ban at the AFL tribunal in a bid to free the gun forward for their bumper clash with the Brisbane Lions.

But Carlton have accepted Lachie Fogarty’s suspension for rough conduct, with the forward sidelined for the Blues’ home game against Adelaide on Saturday.

Pickett was on Friday handed his third ban since the start of last season, this time for a high bump on Adelaide’s Jake Soligo.

The 22-year-old jumped off the ground and made glancing contact with his opponent’s head during the Demons’ 15-point win at Adelaide Oval on Thursday night.

Soligo finished the game and on Friday played down the incident, while Melbourne coach Simon Goodwin was adamant his star forward was attempting to smother the Crows player’s handball.

But AFL match review officer Michael Christian graded the incident as careless conduct, medium impact and high contact, drawing a one-match suspension.

On Monday, Melbourne confirmed they would challenge that ruling.

Pickett is likely to front the tribunal on Tuesday in a bid to play on Thursday night at the MCG.

Fogarty was suspended for a late attempted spoil on Fremantle’s Nat Fyfe. The Docker marked and was collected high by the Blues man’s outstretched arm.

The AFL match review officer graded the incident as high contact, medium impact and careless conduct.

Carlton have opted not to challenge the ban despite coach Michael Voss defending Fogarty in his post-match press conference.

“I thought it was a great contest from two guys keeping their eyes on the footy,” Voss said.

“Fyfe went back with flight, ‘Fog’ came across and tried to spoil, with his eyes on the ball the whole way.”