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Controversy After Round 17

A controversial interchange penalty against Hawthorn could well be responsible for denying the Hawks victory against St Kilda. Cyril Rioli had just kicked a goal with two minutes remaining in the final term to give Hawthorn a 13 point lead. However, the goal was disallowed due to Hawk Grant Birchall briefly putting a foot across the interchange line before a teammate had come off the ground. The emergency umpire signaled the infringement to the field umpire who then awarded a 50 meter penalty to the Saints.

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Bleak Hawks Down

Hawthorn were heavily criticized last week after their embarrassing and humiliating defeat against the struggling Essendon. They were labeled “soft” by their supporters and their courage when going for the ball was questioned. This week they found themselves playing in Perth without key forward Buddy Franklin, out with injury, in a game that was set to be an even match up. The disconcerting fact for the Hawks was their dismal record at Subiaco Oval where they have won only one game in the last fifteen years. The Eagles were playing for pride in front of their home crowd with a one win and five loss record and expectations were high for them to run all over the hapless Hawks. To atone for their shocking performance in Round Six, the Hawks declared they had come to play and their fans were certainly hoping to see them bring some more backbone to this encounter.

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