If statistics don’t lie, Geelong have been the best team in the AFL in the last decade.
The AFL will launch an investigation into the latest score review system controversy that occurred during Geelong’s big win over Richmond.
The AFL has been forced into damage control after yet another score review system debacle, this time Richmond appearing to be robbed of a goal in their clash with Geelong at the MCG.
The system came in for widespread criticism after the league admitted to two errors in round 11, Fremantle’s Michael Walters wrongly credited a goal in a four-point win over Collingwood at the MCG and a major to West Coast’s Oscar Allen incorrectly paid.
Jack Higgins looked to have booted a much-needed goal on Friday night to stop a run of five unanswered majors by the Cats, but a score review was called for when the goal umpire asked for confirmation the ball had hit the post.
One camera angle looked to show a clear gap between the post and the ball but the score reviewer’s decision was to definitively award a behind instead of throwing it back to the umpire’s call.
Tigers coach Damien Hardwick has been a vocal critic of the system in the past, labelling its technology deplorable last year, but he had greater concerns following the 16.8 (104) to 5.7 (37) drubbing by the Cats.
“I was on the bench and I couldn’t see anything,” Hardwick said.
“It is what it is.”
Pressed on whether he thought the mooted central AFL review bunker would help alleviate issues with the system, the coach was more forthright.
“I think we can spend our money better … just let the umpires make the decision,” he said.
“It’s been happening for 150 years … more.
“I don’t know, I don’t care.”
An AFL spokesperson at the game said the findings of a review into the incident would be made public on Saturday.
Former Richmond champion Matthew Richardson called the situation embarrassing on the Channel Seven broadcast.
Carlton’s Sam Docherty and Collingwood’s Jeremy Howe both tweeted “Not again” in response to the second-quarter incident.
Cats coach Chris Scott was more forgiving.
“I think it’s better than the previous system, which was allowing the howlers through,” Scott said.
“Let’s accept as a competition that mistakes will happen. I know it’s easier for me to say when we’ve won the game.
“To think that these things are going to be perfect is naive in the extreme.
“Let’s not make it a bigger issue than it is. Mistakes will happen, sometimes it helps you and sometimes it hurts you.
“Let’s move on.”
The AFL blamed a technical issue for the error in the Dockers-Magpies game, but admitted the reviewer in the Eagles-Western Bulldogs game at Optus Stadium got it wrong.