Former Port Adelaide coach Mark Williams says that the game-deciding free kick awarded to West Coast midfielder Luke Shuey ‘made him vomit’, labelling it the same as a dive.
Shuey was controversially awarded a free kick for a high tackle against Power midfielder Jared Polec in the dying seconds of Saturday night’s extra time elimination final thriller, which he duly converted after the siren to hand the Eagles a famous win.
Williams told SEN Afternoons that the umpires didn’t apply the rules correctly.
“That made me vomit,” he said.
“I understand Luke Shuey is a very good player, I understand he’s very smart – he picked the right time to do exactly what I might have done too.
“But it made me vomit because it is not a free.
“The umpires and the AFL have come and tried to say (that it was correct). There is no chance that is a free.
“It’s the same as a dive.”
Earlier this year, the AFL instructed clubs and media about a change to the way high tackles would be deliberated.
“Play on is called if the ball carrier is responsible for contact via a shrug, a drop, an arm lift or a duck,” the amended AFL rules read.
Williams said that if it was North Melbourne forward Lindsay Thomas – who also has a long history of drawing free kicks – rather than Shuey, there would be a huge outcry.
“It would be all over the papers and people would be smashing him,” he said.
“I’m telling you, it’s exactly the same.”
Williams said that Shuey’s history of ducking for free kicks and shrugging the arm to draw high contact should have been in the umpire’s mind.
“Anyone that follows the game really closely knows that he does that all the time,” he said.
“It’s a joke.
“Luke Shuey couldn’t look in the mirror and not know that he did it.
“But very smart Luke, well done.”