- AFLW star facing monster ban for crunching tackle
- Tackle left Swan Paige Sheppard concussed
- Many footy fans thought the tackle was legal
AFLW star Britney Gutknecht is facing a monster ban for a tackle that left Sydney’s Paige Sheppard concussed on Saturday – but many footy fans believe the tackle was just fine.
The Bulldogs midfielder tackled an unaware Sheppard from behind and drilled her into the Whitten Oval turf during the match.
Sheppard was left concussed and writhing in pain from the crunching hit, and Gutknecht was sent straight to the AFLW Tribunal and faces a ban of at least three-plus weeks on the sidelines.
The match review ruled Gutknecht’s tackle as careless, severe impact and high contact – and the ban she is now facing is the longest in the history of the AFLW.
At the time of the incident, Fox Footy commentator Ruby Schleicher praised the ‘monster tackle’ from Gutknecht.
The tackle from Britney Gutknecht left Paige Sheppard concussed and writhing in pain
‘That is going to hurt in the morning,’ she said.
‘You could see (Gutknecht) coming. Sheppard just unaware of Gutknecht sneaking up on her.
‘That is just a huge tackle.
‘It is a fair tackle, I think. I think that is completely momentum of the game, I don’t see any dirtiness in that.’
AFL star Will Schofield reacted to the news that Gutknecht had been cited for the tackle with one word: ‘Why?’
Daniel Harford, a former AFLW coach, didn’t have a problem with the move either.
‘Tackled above waist and below shoulders. No sling or double motion,’ Harford wrote on X.
‘Sheppard lands on her back. ‘Girls’ play hard too.
Gutknecht was sent straight to the AFLW Tribunal and faces a ban of at least three weeks
‘Not for the first time on social media… it’s time for #FreeBritney.’
The decision has sparked debate among fans, with many believing that the tackle was textbook.
‘That’s literally the perfect tackle. The tackled player just landed awkwardly,’ wrote one fan on X.
‘That’s a great tackle! One action. No sling no dump,’ replied another.
‘What an amazing Tackle! One of the best I have seen! No way this is reportable. Everything is textbook!’ said a third
‘Perfectly executed tackle. No case to answer,’ commented another.
Gutknecht’s hearing comes just a week after Crow defender Najwa Allen copped a huge three-match ban for a bump.