Monday, April 12, 2021

Man on the mark rule, stand, Fremantle vs West Coast, 50 metre penalty, video, reaction, Nic Naitanui, Brennan Cox

Fans have again been left confused over the 'stand' rule following this incident in Fremantle's scratch match against West Coast.

Footy fans have been left concerned over the AFL’s new ‘stand’ rule after a seemingly innocuous incident during Fremantle’s scratch match against West Coast.

Even Eagles superstar Nic Naitanui tweeted his confusion following a 50-metre penalty given against Dockers backman Brennan Cox.

As Oscar Allen was lining up for a set shot on a 45-degree angle from around 30 metres out, Cox manned the mark.

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Under the new rule, the man on the mark cannot move from his position. It’s an attempt to open up the game and allow faster ball movement, and from all reports has led to higher scoring in pre-season hit-outs.

However both the commentators and viewers found it a bit absurd when Cox was penalised for taking barely a step backwards.

Is that REALLY a 50?! | 00:34

The Docker appeared to be trying to stretch out his legs, and wasn’t gaining an advantage or stopping Allen from playing on.

“That’s 50 metres. Can you believe?” one commentator on the live stream said.

Another added: “I think it was three centimetres he moved his foot.”

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After a video of the penalty surfaced on social media on Sunday, Allen’s Eagles teammate Naitanui tweeted a confused emoji.

“This can’t be right. AFL – please fix. Tell us this isn’t how the rule is supposed to be used this season. #MindNumbing”, radio host Mark Allen tweeted, among a chorus of negativity.

While the incident was a particularly touchy one, there has been some positivity from those in the AFL world about the rule doing what it is intended to do.

“I think you’ll find that (increased scoring) across the competition because of the way you’ll have to man the mark,” former Saints coach and Melbourne footy boss Alan Richardson said on commentary during Melbourne and Richmond’s scratch match.

“Teams will strategise based on their own personnel around that play, it does give opportunity. You are able to move the ball quicker.

“Ironically we thought we moved the ball too quickly and needed to compose ourself more. I think that’ll be a trend given he has to have concrete boots on and teams will exploit that.

“I’d be surprised if it didn’t, it allows you to find the corridor and roll.”

The Herald Sunreported of the nine scratch matches played over the last week, no more than two 50-metre penalties for the infringement were paid in any game.

There were no penalties under the rule in the Cats vs Magpies or Tigers vs Demons matches.

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