‘World’s gone mad’: AFL star charged
DAYS after the AFL gave the all clear to a controversial non-decision on Friday night, Sydney Swans defender Dane Rampe has been charged with conduct unbecoming for climbing the goalpost.
Rampe sent the AFL world into meltdown by pulling a Spider-Man impersonation and climbing the goalpost, causing it to shake as Essendon's David Myers - a prodigious kick by anyone's standards - launched an after-the-siren shot at goal from 60m out.
The kick didn't make the trip but Essendon stars Jake Stringer and Cale Hooker remonstrated on the ground with umpire Andre Gianfagna demanding what under the laws of the game should have been a free kick from the goal line that would have almost certainly handed them the win.
But on Saturday, AFL boss Gillon McLachlan stood by the umpiring decision.
"I'll wait and see what the footy department says, but for me it seems pretty practical umpiring," McLachlan said.
"Apparently there is lots of different camera angles. But he gave him the warning and the guy got down and it didn't impact on the play.
"That seemed to be a very practical response. People are getting into the technicalities of what the rule says, but if he'd stayed there it would have been a free kick. He gave him the warning and it didn't impact the play.
"It seemed a pretty pragmatic piece of umpiring."
But now it seems that the AFL have changed their stance and charged Rampe for the act.
The unbelievable moment was followed by severe backlash on Friday which only amplified following McLachlan's comments the day after.
Now the latest news has left fans scratching their heads and left one former Western Bulldogs star up in arms.
If the letter of the law had of been followed, Myers would have been awarded a free kick from the goal line and would have kicked the match-winning goal.
It would have left Essendon with a 4-4 record, instead they sit fuming over the non-decision and in 13th spot on the ladder at 3-5.
Rampe addressed the two incidents on Monday after his coach John Longmire addressed the media earlier in the day.
"You address it and move on. That's all you can do as a player and coach - look at that, speak about it and get on with the next thing," Longmire said.
"He's a real quality person. He made a couple of mistakes, he'll learn from that and move on.
"I spoke to him on Saturday morning and he said I 'just genuinely didn't know the rule'.
"I said 'well you do now and it'd be best to stay away from goalposts in the future'.
"It was a pretty brief conversation and, it's be fair to say, I wouldn't expect him to do it in the future."