AFL News: ‘Awkward he’s still captain’


The Dayne Zorko luge saga has gotten a new twist, with claims the Lions captain was provoked into making the comment that left Melbourne defender Harrison Petty on the verge of tears.

After Zorko only offered a qualified apology in an interview on SENclaiming the sledding at Petty “was not without provocation”, AFL reporter Caroline Wilson claimed the 33-year-old was the target of even more heinous verbal taunts from Demons players during the game from last Friday night.

“I’ve been told that some of the things said to Zorko — and Zorko gives his best, and is a famous luge player — were pretty gross,” Wilson said on Nine’s. Footy Ranked Wednesday night.

“If you were to investigate what was said, you would investigate more what was said to Zorko about the women in his life – much worse than what was said to Petty.”

Wilson also argued the AFL was far too quick to end its investigation into the incident, saying the league “dropped the case like a hot potato” but said the case should now be closed. permanently closed.

“Melbourne were very, very keen for that to go as well…both clubs said they were happy with the way it had been handled within the clubs,” Wilson said.

“Brisbane didn’t want to talk about it, but I think when Max Gawn came out and had another crack there was a view – and I was told things earlier in the week that I didn’t think necessary to evoke – it is beyond the power to bring it up.

“The AFL is very happy that this is going away, and Melbourne should stop talking about it… Max was right, he [Zorko] crossed a line, but the Melbourne players also crossed a line.

“What was said was pretty disgusting, and let’s not just think Dayne Zorko is one.”

Zorko had taken for SEN to offer his side of the proceedings on Wednesday afternoon, saying his interaction with Petty “wasn’t just unprovoked sledding.”

“I apologized to Harrison for the last siren and that apology still holds, my remorse still holds,” he said.

“If I could take it back, I definitely would…I just want to convey that it was an intense game. Honestly, from the first rebound, there was back and forth on both sides of the fence .

“Players across the pitch have probably crossed the line the whole game. And I admit that I certainly went through that.

“I just think it’s really important for Lions fans and fans in general to know that it wasn’t just an unprovoked sledge and it wasn’t said in isolation.

“It was back and forth for most of the game, and with remorse I accept that I overstepped the mark.”

Zorko was praised for his frank interview, with Footy Ranked panelist and former coach Ross Lyon praising his conduct.

“He looked agitated [on Friday night], and now I’m beginning to understand the nuance and why. Because he was provoked,” Lyon said.

“It was [of] a deeply personal nature, and perhaps he controlled himself reasonably well in the context.

Lyon’s comments found an echo on AFL 360 by sun herald AFL chief writer Mark Robinson said Zorko had “behaved with class”.

“He was responding to some verbal teasing from the Melbourne Football Club,” Robinson said.

“Now, I’m not going to repeat them here either… [they were] on his personal life, on his family. About his wife.

“So he responds as he did. Dayne Zorko could easily have said today “that’s what I was told”, but he didn’t. He took it on the chin, he said ‘Hey, I was answering, but I admit that I crossed the line’.

“I think that was a very good response. It’s a very ugly episode, I think now definitely for Zorko, there’s a bit of understanding that there was a bit the other way around from the demons.

However, Zorko’s predecessor as Lions captain Dayne Beams blasted the veteran’s reaction, taking to Instagram to take his former club to task.

“It’s embarrassing that he’s still captain. The worst part is I’m not even surprised,” Beams wrote.

(Photo by Albert Perez/AFL Photos via Getty Images)

‘I don’t care’: Cornes’ blunt response to Australian critics

Former Australia top manager Kane Cornes hit back at criticism of the selected squad on Wednesday night.

Among the more controversial calls was the choice to name Port Adelaide star Connor Rozee to the 22-man squad, along with Cornes, who played a club-record 300 AFL games for the Power, a longtime defender of the 22 year old player.

However, Cornes dismissed any accusations of undue favouritism, saying Rozee was a “unanimous” decision to be named to the team by the 11-person panel.

“Rozee picked herself…unanimously really in the end,” Cornes said on SEN.

“Top five in the Coaches Award, more votes than anyone since he went on the ball against Carlton in the fifth round of this second half.

“Honestly, I was thrilled for him. He was challenged by his own teammates at the start of the year to be tougher and tougher, to be better at competing.

“He did it and to finish in the top five of the Coaches Award he basically picked himself.”

While critics also pointed to the snobbery of Hawthorn star James Sicily and the controversial inclusion of Collingwood’s Brayden Maynard, Cornes said he was “really happy” with the eventual team.

“I’m happy to take your calls and your comments on this. I don’t really care,” he said.

“I thought they were an amazing team, I thought they were a brilliant team and I’m really happy with how they landed.”

‘Highly unlikely’… but Lyon won’t rule out playing Essendon coach

Former manager Ross Lyon said he will learn from his experience last year as he vied for the vacant Carlton coaching job, in his approach to the top job at Essendon.

Lyon have previously been linked with the senior Bombers job, with chairman David Barham saying the club would be looking for “a more experienced coach” to replace sacked Ben Rutten.

Speaking on Nine’s Footy RankedLyon, who has worked in the media since being sacked by Fremantle at the end of 2019, said he ‘didn’t appreciate’ speculation about his eventually broken connection with the Blues, and would address the Bombers’ position in a very different way.

While saying it’s “highly unlikely” he will ever coach at senior level again in 2023, Lyon also pointedly suggested it wasn’t set in stone yet.

“I’m very suspicious and I’m very cautious about anything related to senior AFL coaching,” he said.

if he [Barham] heard me last night and said “I can ease your mistrust and be careful”[Imightconsidercoaching.

Lyon hailed the Bombers as an “incredible club historically” and said the club’s recent off-field disputes were not a dealbreaker, but stressed they would be reluctant to be “the slave of AFL football”.




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