The young footballer bowled over by Prime Minister Scott Morrison in an awkward on-field mishap is OK and looking forward to school on Thursday, his club has confirmed, hailing the boy’s “determination”.
“Our club values are determination, effort and respect,” the Strikers said on Facebook.
“We think Luca showed plenty of determination and effort to stop the PM scoring at all costs!
“The latest star of the election is ok and looking forward to being the star of the show at school tomorrow!”
Morrison replied to the post thanking Luca for being “such a good sport”.
“Great to chat to you and your mum tonight and hear you’re all good,” he said.
“Enjoyed our chat about your love of football and to hear you’ve had three hat tricks already.”
Elizabeth Howes, who said her son was also on the field at the time, said she would not have given such a positive reaction.
“You were playing with my child in that game,” she said.
“I’m furious that you were allowed to play and potentially injured my kid.
“He didn’t know who you were, he thought the people taking pictures of him was awesome.”
Morrison had been invited to join in the practice match — still in his shirt, tie and formal shoes — during a visit to the football club in the marginal northern Tasmanian electorate of Braddon.
The Liberal leader, keen to get in on the action, powered from the outside of the field, towards the ball, his tie flapping over his shoulder.
Unfortunately, with his eye fixed firmly on the ball, he appeared to trip and barrel into Luca.
The young player was toppled by Morrison, who landed on top of him.
Morrison pulled the ginger-haired young sportsman on top of him in an
awkward hug, before sitting up looking dazed.
Once the pair had recovered, the PM gave him a high five.
Liberal Gavin Pearce holds Braddon on a narrow margin of 3.1 per cent.