AFL reporter Mark Robinson has labelled the incarceration of Richmond forward Sydney Stack a “national disgrace” as the AFL once again faces a logistical nightmare in the wake of more Covid-19 complications.
The Richmond forward was told to self-quarantine for two weeks at an address in Northam, a town northeast of Perth, but police alleged he later left that property and returned to Perth, staying at a home in Belmont.
Police further alleged he visited the entertainment precinct in Northbridge, where he was found reportedly fighting in a street.
Stack was charged with failing to comply with a direction and his matter was called in Perth Magistrates Court. He was remanded in custody for several weeks and fined $6000 for the incident.
Speaking on Fox Footy on Wednesday night, AFL 360 co-host Robinson said Stack’s incarceration was a “great shame on Western Australia”, particularly since similar Covid-19 breaches have not seen the same ramifications.
“The truckies who busted protocols, families who busted protocols, the rich dudes who jumped in their boat and went from Sydney to Queensland and went to the Wallabies game and got a $4000 fine,” Robinson said on Wednesday evening.
“I’ll say it again, that Sydney Stack was put in prison for 3-4 weeks for breaking quarantine is a national disgrace and a great shame on Western Australia.
“I cannot believe the longer this goes and the lack of penalties for these people who are deliberately doing it, and a young fella was thrown in jail.
“I’m glad he’s back playing football.”
Stack has played 27 games for the Tigers since making his AFL debut in 2019.
In September, he was slapped with a 10-match ban after he and Tigers teammate Callum Coleman-Jones were involved in a scuffle near a Gold Coast strip club while participating in the AFL hub.
Stack later apologised on Instagram, but he missed Richmond’s grand final victory over Geelong due to his suspension.
“I’m very sorry, understand the seriousness of it and can do nothing now but own the consequences,” he wrote at the time.
The Swans and Giants are yet to have a venue for their derby clash that won’t be played in Ballarat as scheduled after both teams were told to leave Victoria, where they had been playing out of a hub after fleeing NSW last month.
Sydney and GWS will play their Ballarat contest in Queensland after flying out at 8.45am on Thursday morning to Brisbane on a chartered flight.
The AFL is still trying to reunite players and their families, which could now happen in Queensland.
Sydney chief executive Tom Harley said on Thursday the Swans did not even know where they would be staying in Queensland.
The Bulldogs are set to play the Gold Coast at Metricon Stadium on Saturday and have left early to avoid any potential border issues.
The Victorian government has made no decision on whether to ban crowds this weekend after at least one patron was Covid-positive at the MCG at the Carlton-Geelong game.