‘Two sets of rules’: AFL greats slam ‘remarkable’ treatment of Jack Ginnivan


AFL commentators believe the pendulum has swung so far against Jack Ginnivan umpires are now blatantly refusing to award him free kicks for high tackles.

Geelong defeated Ginnivan’s Hawthorn 17.4 (106) to 10.10 (70) on Easter Monday and the 21-year-old’s treatment from umpires was a major talking point.

Ginnivan burst onto the footy scene in 2022 when he kicked 40 goals in just his second year at Collingwood.

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But his tendency to duck into tackles and play for free kicks style rubbed some the wrong way — and he was traded from Collingwood to Hawthorn in the off-season after winning a premiership medal with the Magpies.

In his third game for the Hawks on Monday, Ginnivan was taken high in several contests but the umpires seemed intent on keeping the whistle away when the livewire small forward was involved.

Kangaroos great David King was convinced the umpires had been instructed not to give Ginnivan free kicks because of his playing history.

Watch Fox Footy’s discussion about Jack Ginnivan in the video player above.

“There’s been 11 high tackles paid today, and just by sheer coincidence the two Jack are involved in are a no-call,” King said on Fox Footy.

“He’s gone from 21 (high tackle free kicks) in 2022 to four last year to one so far this year.

“They have two sets of rules. It’s as simple as that. The guy with the long sleeves gets nothing. Eleven today and none to Jack, I think the case rests.”

Jason Dunstall replied: “But he did create that rod for his own back early doors when he started ducking and milking free kicks and getting them. Now it’s gone to the other end of the spectrum so they need to find that happy medium.

“I think it’s difficult for the umpires now, especially when as soon as you see the arm come up from a player, you think he’s shrugging.”

Leigh Montagna added: “If he kept his arm down, he would have got paid those two free kicks. But because he continues to lift his arm, the umpires are instructed not to pay them.”

On Channel 7, commentator Brian Taylor criticised the umpires for ignoring several occasions where Ginnivan was taken high.

“That’s twice he’s been clearly tackled around the head,” Taylor said.

“I don’t think he bent at the knees until he was clearly tackled around the head. I reckon he’s deserved a couple today he hasn’t got.

“It’s been remarkable. There’s been at least three, possibly five today against Ginnivan they have not paid simply because of the history. He can consider himself very unlucky today.”

Luke Hodge quipped: “Jack is pleading with the umpires at this stage. He just wants one.

“I hope the umpires go through and have a look at a couple of those. Yes he has faked those in the past, but there’s been a decent number of legit ones they haven’t paid.”

Ginnivan kicked one goal in Hawthorn’s 36-point loss to Geelong — the Hawks are still without a win while the Cats are unbeaten from three games.

The traditional Easter clash was delayed for 46 minutes due to lightning near the MCG before the final quarter was allowed to start.

Geelong key forward Tom Hawkins kicked four goals in his 350th AFL game.

Originally published as ‘Two sets of rules’: AFL greats slam ‘remarkable’ treatment of Jack Ginnivan



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