Tippett’s murky deal leads to AFL probe
Adelaide say they will cop any penalty given to them by the AFL for their secret deal which could kill Kurt Tippett’s bid to join Sydney.
The Crows face fines and loss of draft picks, and star forward Tippett could be deregistered as an AFL player, if an investigation by the AFL finds they broke the league’s rules.
Tippett’s manager Peter Blucher also faces a possible ban for his role in a murky deal which was hidden from the AFL for three years until last Friday.
Tippett became Adelaide’s highest-paid player in 2009 when agreeing to a three-year contract extension with the club.
Since the signing, speculation has been rife of a clause which enabled Tippett to be traded at the end of the contract to the club of his choice, in return for a second-round draft pick – compensation well below the key forward’s market worth.
Crows management repeatedly denied the existence of the clause in the contract.
But the Crows admitted to the AFL last Friday they had a secret agreement, outside the contract, with Tippett.
Tippett’s contract with the Crows has expired and he has requested a trade to the premier Swans.
The move shocked Adelaide, who believed Queensland-born Tippett would likely return home if he left the club.
And with the AFL trade period ending on Friday at 2pm (AEDT), Tippett’s future hinges on the findings of the league’s investigation.
Adelaide chairman Rob Chapman said the Crows board confessed to the AFL “because it was the right thing to do”.
“There was no alternative here,” Chapman told Adelaide radio station 5AA.
“The thought not to disclose never entered our mind and (Crows chief executive) Steven (Trigg) and I made that call straight away.”
Chapman did not explain why Adelaide kept the deal a secret for three years.
“If we have stuffed up in any way, and I’m not pre-empting that, we’ll put up our hand and say sorry and remedy it and move on,” Chapman said.
“… We will take whatever comes out of it.”
Chapman declined to guarantee the position of Trigg as club chief executive.
“We will reach the right conclusions after this,” he said.
“Steven Trigg has been a veteran of this world, as has (former football operations manager) Johnny Reid, (current football operations manager) Phil Harper, everyone at our club.
“And they have got a history of complying with the rules and … I don’t want to speculate beyond that because that might prejudice the outcome of the investigation.”
The Crows, by confessing the deal, were not ensuring a lighter penalty from the AFL, he said.
“We brought it to their attention … but there is no assurances,” Chapman said.© AAP 2013
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