AFL Boss Defends Maynard Verdict Amid League Leadership Reshuffle


Gillon McLachlan, the boss of the AFL, maintains that Brayden Maynard was dealt with firmly but fairly in the wake of his collision with fellow Collingwood defender, Angus Brayshaw. McLachlan has swiftly dismissed suggestions from Brayshaw’s brother, Hamish, a prominent WAFL player, who implied an orchestrated effort by the league to ensure Maynard’s participation in the Magpies’ preliminary final.

Despite the AFL’s initial standpoint that Maynard deserved suspension, McLachlan voiced his approval for the proceeding of the case by the MRO and tribunal. He buttressed comments made earlier this week by football head, Laura Kane, highlighting a comprehensive review of the incident including similar situations that would occur before next season.

Recognizing the magnitude of the situation was not lost on McLachlan. “This is a complex issue indeed – a player was unconscious for an extended duration and the wellbeing of Angus is the primary focus for everyone involved,” McLachlan declared.

The AFL, however, maintained that the incident warranted suspension. McLachlan stated, “We respect the tribunal’s decision. It is our responsibility to analyse these kinds of incidents to examine potentially safer practices or modifications to the rules in order to ensure the safety of our players on the field, notwithstanding the inherent physical nature of the sport.”

McLachlan dismissed rumours implying an inclination of the AFL towards aiding Collingwood’s championship aspirations as baseless. “I’m totally unacquainted with the comments made on the Shelter FootyCast, however, the idea that we are colluding to help Collingwood’s championship tilt is absurd,” he finished passionately.

McLachlan guarded the AFL’s timetable for the preliminary finals weekend, though he provided a strong hint that the top-qualified Collingwood would preside over their prelim on Friday night and a twilight game would follow on Saturday at the Gabba.


The AFL league is set to see changes in leadership roles with Kylie Rogers emerging as the beneficiary in the league’s restructure under the forthcoming Chief Executive, Andrew Dillon. Rogers, the league’s customer and commercial executive general manager, will assume an expanded role comprising of the vital broadcast portfolio, a role previously held by long-term executive Travis Auld.

With Auld’s departure from the AFL early last month to join the Australian Grand Prix Corporation as its new CEO, a reshuffle has ensued. Matthew Chun, acting member of the executive, will stand in as executive general manager of finance, clubs and infrastructure. He will be assisted by Tristan Salter, former head of talent pathways and state leagues, as the general manager of operations and Tasmania.

A promotion has also been announced for Stephen Meade, AFL general counsel, who now finds his role expanding to include oversight of the AFL Integrity Unit, which is currently directed by Tony Keane.

Dillon lauded Rogers’ appointment, highlighting her robust relationships with AFL’s broadcast partners as advantageous for her new role. “Kylie has demonstrated significant prowess in driving the commercial success of the AFL and Marvel Stadium while ensuring that our sport remains reasonably priced and reachable,” he explained.


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