OK, time to put an end to this nonsense regarding Cloke Minor and Tyson Edwards' "accidental" head ache.
According to Cloke Major....
"I've watched it 200 or 300 times now...you see his eyes are on the ball the whole time"
Apart from the revelation that his dad's insane, this statement points to a a great footy myth. The one that maintains you can't be intent on hurting someone if you.....
"....happen to be watching the footy."
Aggggh! So fuckin' what!
If a "Look Away Handpass" is a clever bit of play why isn't a "Look Away Belt To The Back Of The Noggin" an equally probable piece of gamesmanship? How unco do we think our players are? These are elite athletes. To suggest that they can't make their arms go one way while their eyes are somewhere else defies belief.
An ex coach of mine, who happened to be a Sandover Medalist, instructed us at length how to swing your arm to belt the head of a marking player so as not to get reported. The key was you didn't look directly at the marker as you swung your arm violently through the general area of the contest. If you had your timing right you smashed the ball and if you missed the ball (or you were a fraction late) you gave your opponent a nice little touch-up. IF, and it was always a big if, you were reported you could always state that the ball was your object and you would get off.
I spent the next ten years bashing full forwards in the side and back of the head and never once got reported. I also always had my eyes fixed firmly on the footy and never once looked at the players head.
Judging by the comment in the Age yesterday...
"The club and Cloke again argued that in following team instructions...."
Mick Malthouse has his players following the same instructions. And you wouldn't expect anything else from a professional coach.
Let's face it, Jason Cloke lined up Tyson Edwards thinking he'd rough him up but fucked up his attempt. No ammount of Eddie McGuire's pathetic, over-emotional hyperbole....
"....football's equivalent of death-row for the last five days...."
"....Jason Cloke is everything we hold dear to our hearts in football...."
"....the football equivalent of the lash"
on and on, snore, snort, blurg, plllft, whaa....
....should change that. In the end, Cloke got his RIGHT WHACK.
So let's drop this myth about "Eyes on the Footy". It's a great big steaming pile of jack from a footy community who laugh themselves silly every time the fans, press and especially the tribunal buy it.