Adelaide will appeal the record three-game AFLW suspension of star midfielder Ebony Marinoff.
Marinoff was given the longest ban in AFLW history on Tuesday night after being found guilty by the tribunal of engaging in forceful front-on contact.
The dual premiership midfielder was cited for an incident in which left GWS’ Irish recruit Brid Stack with a fractured neck during a practice match on Sunday.
The suspension rules Marinoff out for a third of the nine-game AFLW season – a penalty Adelaide’s AFLW coach Matthew Clarke says is “unjust”.
Clarke described the collision as an “unavoidable incident” as the players collided just after Stack collected a loose ball.
“We believe it’s important to not only support our players but to question an outcome which we see as placing an unreasonable expectation on all players to avoid contact in circumstances where the ball is in dispute,” Clarke said on Wednesday.
“Ebony plays the game in the manner we want all players to play and in my opinion, she made every effort to minimise the impact of what was an unavoidable footy collision.
“With regard to the penalty, as coaches and administrators we have a duty of care to our players.
“And Ebony and all other AFLW players train incredibly hard for nine months for the opportunity to play just nine games.
“We feel it is unjust and disproportionate to have one-third of those games taken away by what I believe to be an unavoidable incident.”
Marinoff was sent directly to the tribunal after the AFLW’s match review officer deemed the contact as careless conduct, severe impact and high contact.
The AFLW appeals board will hear Marinoff’s challenge on Thursday night.