By Luke Voogt
Geelong coach Chris Scott has accepted a suspended $10,000 fine for a verbal altercation with Brisbane Lions players at quarter time last Friday.
Scott exchanged words with Lions players, coming metres from them as both teams walked to their respective huddles, before captain Joel Selwood led him away.
The altercation followed Gary Rohan striking Brisbane midfielder Lachie Neale in the first quarter, for which Rohan accepted a two match ban this week.
Conflicting reports and unconfirmed rumours emerged in the media this week about the verbal altercation.
In a press conference following the game Scott claimed Neale had started the stoush.
“I was walking onto the ground and Lachie Neale just said to me, something – I couldn’t understand exactly what he said – but something about Gary Rohan, and I said, ‘I’m happy to have the conversation with you, if you like. I’ve seen the vision [of the strike] and I’m comfortable with it.’
“I suspect that he didn’t hear all of that.
“That’s all that was said. I think a few them… they weren’t paying me compliments but I didn’t say anything after that.”
AFL reporter Damian Barrett claimed that Scott suggested the Lions players, namely Neale, had been “soft” in the opening quarter.
Barrett claimed that teammate Harris Andrews responded with “not as soft as you p****s in the grand final”.
Brisbane Lions captain Dayne Zorko denied these reports on Monday.
“What has come out today in regards to Harris, that’s news to Harris and news to a lot of us,” he told a press conference.
“Nothing like that was said. You could see the passion in both teams.”
Accusations that Lions players had made references to Scott’s hair and commented on Cats forward Gary Rohan’s personal life also emerged in the media this week.
The AFL has neither confirmed nor denied any of these reports but today said Scott had accepted responsibility for the altercation and had apologised for his actions.
AFL executive general manager of football operations Steve Hocking today stressed the obligation of coaches, players and officials to “maintain standards of the code” and set “the right example”.
“Everyone involved in Australian football has a responsibility to demonstrate respect towards each other at all times,” Hocking said.
“That includes coaches towards players and players towards coaches. We can never underestimate the impact of the actions of coaches and players at AFL level on all levels of the game.
“I would like to make it clear that if a similar incident occurs, there will be consequences.”