AFL News: ‘Does my head in’ – Cornes slams Bevo’s reaction to Dogs’ loss, Giant cops big ban for ugly bump


Kane Cornes has slammed the Western Bulldogs and under-fire coach Luke Beveridge for their ‘continuous downplaying of expectations’, as pressure mounts on the club following a shock loss to Hawthorn.

The Bulldogs sit 11th on the ladder with a 3-5 record after being stunned by the Hawks on Sunday afternoon, who recorded just their second win of the season by seven points.

A long-time critic of Beveridge, Cornes took issue with his reaction to the horror loss, reiterating his belief that the coach is ‘wasting one of the AFL’s best lists’, saying the club’s bold off-season which saw them recruit a number of experienced players and trade up in the draft to gain access to young gun Ryley Sanders as being inconsistent with the rebuilding message being offered.

“The one thing I can’t cop is the continuous downplaying of expectations,” Cornes said on SEN Breakfast.

“You don’t get in Nick Coffield, James Harmes, Ryley Sanders, and trade away your first pick in this year’s draft if you think you’re in a rebuilding phase.

“I listen to Luke Beveridge and the way that he talks: it’s like a rebuilding coach. You’ve got Adam Treloar, Bailey Dale, Marcus Bontempelli, Tim English, Tom Liberatore, Aaron Naughton, Sam Darcy, Jamarra Ugle-Hagan. No team has as many weapons as the Western Bulldogs.

“Yet they front up and play against a team, on average, that is two years younger, and they lose the unlosable game, under the roof at Marvel with those weapons in your forward line and those weapons in your midfield.

“I can’t cop it. Why is there no expectation from Luke Beveridge and the Western Bulldogs that they actually have enough weapons in this side? If they had a game plan and if the players were able to execute, they could be winning finals and playing off in prelim finals.

“I don’t get it and it continually does my head in.”

The upset loss has already put the Bulldogs’ finals hopes in serious jeopardy, ahead of a tough next month in which they face Sydney, GWS and Collingwood.

Up next is a must-win clash with the 17th-placed Richmond at the MCG.

Luke Beveridge. (Photo by Michael Willson/AFL Photos via Getty Images)

Adding insult to injury is a late head knock sustained by star midfielder Tom Liberatore, which left him bleeding profusely from the head.

The veteran copped a stray boot to the head in the dying minutes, with Beveridge expressing major concern after he collapsed moments after the knock – following on from a similar moment against Essendon several weeks ago controversially explained by the club as an ‘ankle tweak’.

The match was Liberatore’s first game back after missing matches against St Kilda and Fremantle, first in the AFL’s concussion protocols and then a late scratching against the Dockers due to illness.

“I actually saw him stumble in the middle of the ground, and that’s concerning,” Beveridge said.

“For it to happen again … it’s a bigger concern than just a one-game issue.”

Giants forward cops hefty ban for Sydney Derby bump

GWS forward Callum Brown is facing a three-match rough conduct ban for a high bump on Sydney defender Tom McCartin.

Brown was running after the ball when it bounced into the path of McCartin in the second quarter of Saturday’s derby at the SCG.

The Irishman braced for contact and caught McCartin in the head with his shoulder, dropping the key defender to the ground.

McCartin, 24, had a head injury assessment and was substituted out shortly after, in a game which Sydney won by 29 points.

Callum Brown has been handed a three-match suspension for this incident involving Tom McCartin.

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— AFL (@AFL) May 5, 2024

He has an unfortunate history with head injuries, missing seven games last season with two separate concussions.

His older brother Paddy was forced into retirement through concussions.

Brown’s hit on McCartin was assessed by match review officer Michael Christian as careless conduct, high contact and severe impact, drawing a three-match ban.

That ban would rule Brown, 23, out of key matches against Essendon, the Western Bulldogs and Geelong.

He has booted 15 goals in eight games to become a crucial part of the Giants’ forward line.

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Teammate Toby Greene was offered a $2500 fine for striking Swan Jake Lloyd, while Harry Himmelberg can accept the same fine for tripping James Rowbottom.

North Melbourne veteran Liam Shiels can accept a $2500 fine for striking St Kilda youngster Angus Hastie.

West Coast’s Brady Hough was fined $2500 for striking Essendon winger Xavier Duursma.


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