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AFL all-clear for North's contentious goal

Billy Hartung of the Kangaroos is chased by Jayden Hunt of the Demons during the AFL 2018 JLT Community Series match between the North Melbourne Kangaroos and the Melbourne Demons at Kingborough Oval on February 24, 2018 in Hobart, Australia. (Photo by Michael Willson/AFL Media/Getty Images)
Roar Guru
6th May, 2018
7

The AFL has given the all-clear to a contentious goal kicked by North Melbourne’s Billy Hartung in the Kangaroos’ thrilling two-point win over Sydney.

Hartung’s first-quarter goal appeared to be touched off the boot by Swans veteran Jarrad McVeigh, but no review was called for on the field at the SCG on Saturday night.

McVeigh was adamant he had got something on the ball and replays suggested it may possibly have glanced his fingers.

All goals are reviewed before the restart of play in the centre of the ground and the league is satisfied that allowing Hartung’s goal to stand was the correct call.

“There was not enough definitive evidence to overrule and change the decision in time before the restart of play,” an AFL spokesman told the league’s website on Sunday.

“So the original decision stood.”

AFL football boss Steve Hocking put score reviews on the agenda earlier in the season when he said they were taking too long and he would instruct reviewers to complete their task quicker.

Sydney coach John Longmire was uncertain about the incident but seemingly philosophical about the outcome.

‘Someone told me he (McVeigh) touched it, is that right or not?” Longmire said at his post-match press conference.

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“If he touched it, he touched it and that’s what the review is for, I would have thought, but anyway.”

Score reviews were in the spotlight again on Sunday afternoon when two Richmond goals were overturned in the second quarter of their clash against Fremantle at the MCG.

Dustin Martin snapped truly through traffic only to have it disallowed upon review, as did Josh Caddy in similar circumstances.

On both occasions, no review was called for on the field, but play was held up while reviews were completed to the chagrin of coach Damien Hardwick, who last week blasted the score review system.

“The ball goes back to the centre bounce and then all of a sudden, we’re waiting around for 45 seconds,” Hardwick said using a Shai Bolton score from last year as an example.

“Figure it out. It’s not hard.”