Jumper punches

It was the match between North Melbourne and Melbourne in Round 9, which sparked speculation of the infamous jumper punches between players and clubs. Many on-field incidents unfolded during this match, which saw North Melbourne’s Ben Cunnington receive a $1, 000 fine with an early plea for punching Melbourne’s Bernie Vince in the stomach following a passage of play.

AFLJumperPunch Ben Cunnington North Dees

Melbourne's Bernice Vince on the other end of North Melbourne's Ben Cunnington's jumper punch, Round 9.

After North Melbourne's win over the Demons in Round 9, Coach Brad Scott, labelled jumper punches as "cheap shots", which should be an issue handled by umpires not the Match Review Panel (MRP), as cited on foxsports.com.au.

After some heated incidents over the past weeks, the AFL has given the MRP the immediate authority to suspend players for stomach and jumper punches. It’s uncommon for the AFL to make rule changes during the season, but AFL Football Operations Manger, Simon Lethlean, agrees that a change to the rule is required in a bid to eliminate on-field punching. 

Simon Lethlean jumper punches

AFL's Football Operations Manager, Simon Lethlean.

Players in the past have been fined for punches, which have been deemed low-impact, but the MPR will now make decisions on a harsher method and elicit a stricter warning.

Ultimately, the AFL want to make it clear that their objective is to eradicate any on-field jumper punches. By introducing this legislation the AFL is emphasising that this new move is a promising start to help achieve this.  




Elisa Ringeri

As part of the Rookie Me team, Elisa is passionate about all things AFL; and is always keeping on top of any news to hit the AFL scene.
Elisa has completed her bachelor degree in Exercise and Sport Science and has been involved in numerous football clubs.

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Article References
  • Article: Fox Sports STAFF WRITERS, "Jumper punch issue to flare up again after Round 9 Match Review Panel decisions", foxsports.com.au, Published on 22 May 0017, Accessed on 27 May 0017, http://www.foxsports.com.au/af...
  • Article: R. Davidson, "AFL to suspend players for gut, jumper punches", afl.com.au, Published on 23 May 0017, Accessed on 27 May 0017, http://www.afl.com.au/news/201...
  • Image: Jason Phelan and Warren Barnsley, "AFL warns players: punch and you're out", The West Australian, Published on 23 May 0017, Accessed on 27 May 0017, https://thewest.com.au/sport/a...
  • Image: AFL image library, afl.com.au, Accessed on 27 May 0017, http://www.afl.com.au/search?q...
  • Image: As cited in article by J. Talent, "ROBBO: DELIBERATE OUT OF BOUNDS RULE IS A JOKE", Sen.com.au, Published on 17 May 2005, Accessed on 17 May 0027, https://www.sen.com.au/news/20...

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