Player, spec­ta­tors banned

Brawl af­ter­math: Three years for fan, Avon­dale’s Valzan cops a year-long sus­pen­sion

Isis Town and Country - - Sport - By JIM ALOUAT

AN AVON­DALE player re­ceived a 12-month ban from rugby league fol­low­ing a brawl which spilled off the field.

The North­ern Dis­tricts Rugby League has shown it will not tol­er­ate vi­o­lence on or off the field, hand­ing out strict pun­ish­ments, in­clud­ing a three-year ban to a spec­ta­tor who was in­volved in the al­ter­ca­tion, which broke out to­wards the end of a game be­tween Avon­dale and Bur­nett Heads on April 12.

With a few min­utes to go, Avon­dale’s Corey Valzan and Bur­nett Heads’ Daniel Honey­will were sent to the sin bin, Honey­will for dis­sent and Valzan for a swing­ing arm.

Be­cause of the sever­ity of the in­ci­dent, it was re­ferred to the Queens­land Rugby League Cen­tral Di­vi­sion on Mon­day, April 13, for re­view

A three-per­son in­de­pen­dent ju­di­ciary handed Valzan a two-week sus­pen­sion for strik­ing on the field and a 12-month ban from any rugby league game for his con­trary con­duct. Honey­will re­ceived a one-week sus­pen­sion for dis­sent, and NDRL chair­man Greg Appo said the lighter sen­tence re­flected the fact he did not get in­volved in the brawl.

Three spec­ta­tors re­ceived var­i­ous bans, in­clud­ing a three-year ban from all rugby league matches in Queens­land. An­other per­son re­ceived a 12-month ban from the sport, and a third in­di­vid­ual re­ceived a three-week ban and a six-month suspended sen­tence. Appo said all play­ers and spec­ta­tors in­volved had seven days to ap­peal the de­ci­sion. He said the mes­sage was clear to play­ers and spec­ta­tors alike.

“The mes­sage needs to get out to every­body that you can’t get in a brawl and think just be­cause it is near a foot­ball field that you’re go­ing to get away with it,” he said. “What I am an­noyed about is that there were chil­dren there and old peo­ple sit­ting in chairs who are not ag­ile enough to get away from it.”

Appo said po­lice were in­ves­ti­gat­ing the brawl, and charges could be laid.

PHOTO: MATTHEW MCIN­ER­NEY PHOTO: FACE­BOOK

BANNED: Avon­dale five-eighth Corey Valzan has been banned from any rugby league game for his in­volve­ment in the brawl. INSET: Bur­nett Heads and Avon­dale play­ers get into some push and shove at the end of their game in the North­ern Dis­tricts Rugby League at South Kolan.

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