Bomber sent to tribunal over bite claim

Essendon’s Conor McKenna has been sent directly to the AFL tribunal over an alleged biting incident in the loss to the Western Bulldogs.

Match review officer Michael Christian announced his findings on Monday.

In other notable cases, Dogs defender Zaine Cordy was handed a one-match ban and Richmond’s Alex Rance and Fremantle’s Aaron Sandilands escaped with fines.

McKenna was tackled to the ground by Dogs forward Tory Dickson in the second quarter on Sunday at Etihad Stadium and a brief tussle ensued between the pair.

It’s alleged McKenna bit Dickson on the neck during the scuffle.

Christian classified the incident as serious misconduct, a charge that’s sent directly to the tribunal with no opportunity for an early plea.

“There was certainly enough evidence for us to believe that it will sustain a charge of serious misconduct,” Christian said.

Two angles of footage, a Bulldogs medical report and interviews by the league’s investigations officer were taken into account.

The tribunal will convene at the AFL’s Docklands headquarters on Tuesday evening.

Cordy was one of the Dogs’ best players in their 21-point win over the Bombers but he was charged with striking Cale Hooker.

He can accept a one-match suspension with an early plea and doesn’t risk a larger ban if he takes his case to the tribunal.

Rance can accept a $2000 fine for striking Hawthorn’s Luke Breust in what Christian deemed a late spoiling attempt.

In fining Sandilands for his bruising shepherd on Gold Coast’s Jarryd Lyons, Christian declared the bump alive and well.

“I think the key thing with bumping is that it’s an integral part of the game and players are allowed to bump – I think we need to make that really clear,” he said.

“We need to understand the game is tough and hard. There are split-second decisions and sometimes players get it wrong.

“But we have to be convinced that Sandilands in this case intended to commit a reportable offence … he got it slightly wrong but I’m not convinced he set out to commit a reportable offence.”

Melbourne’s Sam Frost, North Melbourne’s Scott Thompson, Hawthorn’s Cyril Rioli and Tigers Nick Vlastuin and Dylan Grimes were among the 10 players to receive fines.

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