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Lynch escapes ban for Collins strike

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18th August, 2020
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Richmond premiership star Tom Lynch has escaped suspension despite being charged with two striking offences out of the Tigers’ AFL win over Gold Coast.

Lynch found himself in hot water with the match review officer for a hit on Suns defender Sam Collins during the final quarter at the Gabba on Monday night.

He was also spotted striking ruckman Jarrod Witts during the third term.

On Tuesday, the Tigers spearhead was offered separate $1000 fines for the two offences.

Lynch’s teammate Jake Aarts was cleared of wrongdoing after sticking an arm out and making contact with Collins soon after Lynch had.

Gold Coast’s Caleb Graham was offered a $1000 sanction for striking the Tigers’ Mabior Chol during the last quarter.

Lynch’s swinging right arm to Collins’ chest drew fierce criticism after it was shown during the television broadcast, with former St Kilda champion Nick Riewoldt labelling it a “cheap shot”.

Lynch defended himself during a post-match interview and is free to play in Richmond’s ‘Dreamtime’ match against Essendon in Darwin on Saturday night.

“It was just an open hand and pushed off,” he told ABC Grandstand.

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“That was it … he (Collins) was a bit angry about that but it was just an open hand to the chest, which as key forwards is what you want to do.”

Lynch’s latest sanction comes a fortnight after he was fined $500 for misconduct after shoving Brisbane defender Alex Witherden’s head into the ground.

Tigers coach Damien Hardwick and Lynch’s teammates Jack Riewoldt and Kane Lambert all said in the aftermath of Monday night’s victory they enjoy seeing the star forward play on the edge.

Richmond have collectively had 14 fines for on-field misdemeanours this season, including six from their past three matches.

“Dimma (Hardwick) wants us to play assertive and aggressive football, sometimes that’s going to push the boundaries,” Lambert told SEN radio on Tuesday.

“We don’t want to be reckless, but as a smaller type player, playing around a key (forward) like Tom Lynch I’ve got a lot of confidence. He always looks out for us.

“I really love playing with Tommy, he’s been great for the football club.”

© AAP