Blues have Boyd’s one-game AFL ban reduced to fine

Roger Vaughan and Oliver Caffrey |

Carlton’s Jordan Boyd will play against GWS after his one-game ban was downgraded to a fine.
Carlton’s Jordan Boyd will play against GWS after his one-game ban was downgraded to a fine.

Carlton defender Jordan Boyd will play against GWS after the Blues had his penalty downgraded at a marathon AFL tribunal hearing.

After the tribunal panel deliberated for two hours, they reduced the grading of his forceful front-on contact charge from medium to low.

That means instead of a one-game suspension, Boyd is fined and he will play against the Giants.

The tribunal found Boyd committed the offence when he collided with Richmond forward Rhyan Mansell during last Sunday’s game.

It rejected Carlton’s submission during the hearing Mansell had deliberately ducked to milk a free kick, contributing to the incident.

AFL advocate Sam Bird said Carlton’s argument went close to victim-blaming, which Blues counterpart Peter O’Farrell denied.

Tribunal chair Renee Enbom said in the findings Boyd had slowed down immediately before his contact with Mansell and this “significantly reduced” the impact.

“But for Mr Boyd taking several steps immediately before contact to reduce the impact, we would have upheld the medium grading,” she said.

She added Boyd tried to cradle Mansell and also moved to stop the Richmond player from falling backwards.

“These actions helped to minimise the actual impact of the contact, which was low. Importantly, they also helped to reduce the potential for injury – for these reasons, we find the impact to be low,” she said

Boyd did not give evidence in the hearing, which went for nearly four hours.

Mansell had gathered the ball in the last term of Carlton’s 61-point win when Boyd collected him.

The Tigers forward ducked his head as he moved towards Boyd and the defender’s stomach caught him.

Mansell was given a free kick for high contact and managed to play out the game.

The incident was assessed as careless conduct, high contact and medium impact.

Boyd has played all 15 games this season.

Gold Coast player Ben Long challenged his fine for striking with a written submission to the tribunal.

Long was fined $3750 for striking Collingwood defender Brayden Maynard and could have accepted a $2500 penalty with an early plea.