Sydney Swans star Lance Franklin has been given a one-match suspension for hitting Richmond’s Trent Cochin, the 1000-goal hero has been dropped from his team’s Round 12 showdown with Melbourne in the MCG.
The incident happened in the second quarter of the clash on Friday night, when a frustrated Franklin hit Cochin after the Tigers midfielder Swann focused on the key forward in the attacking 50s.
Franklin was initially given a free kick for arguing with Cochin, before a pair of right-handed injuries to Cochin’s jaw turned the free kick upside down.
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Match review officer Michael Christian described the incident as deliberate behavior with low impact and high communication, which resulted in a one-match ban.
Since Franklin’s swipe did not leave Cochin on the ground, those who witnessed the incident were confused about what the final outcome would be.
“Either (there was communication) or Trent should go to Hollywood,” Colinwood Great Nathan Buckley said in a Fox Footy coverage.
“I got a secret suspicion there was communication. Of course communication and he threw it, I don’t know how you can argue it’s not intentional.”
AFLW star Daisy Pierce pleaded for a difference.
“I think he’ll be fine. I think he went to push his chest and slip a little higher,” he said in Seven’s coverage.
“They wouldn’t like the AFL look, but it slipped high, an open hand, it barely brushed him off and Cochin played well.
“I think the worst is fine.”
The Swans enter the blockbuster match-up with a 7-4 record, while the top-ranked Demons will be expected to bounce back after their first loss of the season to Fremantle on Saturday.
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