Appeal won: Patrick Cripps in the clear over rough conduct charge

Carlton’s player advocate, Chris Townshend QC, took close to two hours in making his submissions.

In a hearing with increasingly complex legal debate, Townshend argued the tribunal had applied an error of law as Cripps reasonably contested the ball rather than electing to bump, and questioned the interpretation of the AFL “bumping rule” and how it was applied.

He also claimed there was “a denial of natural justice”, which he argued was an error and “would have affected the result”.

“The tribunal’s decision is infected with error and is so unreasonable it requires reversing,” he said.

On Tuesday night, tribunal chairman Jeff Gleeson QC said Cripps would not have been suspended in a different era because he had eyes on the ball while contesting the ball with Ah Chee, however he said Cripps had not acted reasonably when he turned his body into a “classic bumping position” to win the ball.

“He entered the contest at speed and saw a player in his peripheral vision, left his feet and bumped Ah Chee at high speed,” Gleeson said.

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