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PROTRACK » GENERAL » SAAL athlete & SAAFL umpire Craig Trewartha attacked during game of footy - Club banned for rest of 2016

SAAL athlete & SAAFL umpire Craig Trewartha attacked during game of footy - Club banned for rest of 2016

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Rosewater Football Club dumped from SAAFL due to player violence and abuse towards umpires

By Doug Robertson,
The Advertiser
Wednesday 20th July 2016

THE SA Amateur Football League has dumped Rosewater Football Club from the league for the remainder of the 2016 after a series of violent incidents and abuse towards umpires.

An alleged unprovoked attack on an umpire by 300-game veteran and longtime captain Adam Rumbelow last Saturday sparked the strong reaction from the league.

Today a special meeting of the Board of Management decided to deregister the 130-year-old Divison 5 club from the state’s largest grassroots competition.

A power club from the mid-1950s to the mid-70s, winning a Division 1 and two Division 2 flags, Rosewater FC’s three senior teams and under-18s cannot play in the SAAFL again this year.

No registered Rosewater player can play football in Australia for the remainder of this season.

However, the Bulldogs under-16s to under-8s teams, which play in the Metro-West Junior Football League, and the “Old Dogs” veterans team in the SA Masters competition, are not affected by the ban.

SAAFL chief executive John Kernahan said it was not in the league’s nor Rosewater FC’s best interests to reveal the full list of Code of Conduct breaches that led to deregistration but he listed the following:

June, 13, 2015 — player Scott Balchin reported and subsequently suspended for four matches for abusive and threatening language to an umpire.

August 22, 2015 — Brett McPherson reported and suspended for 12 matches for striking, resulting in a broken jaw to an opposition player.

June 15, 2016 — reports of “conduct unbecoming “ at an under-18s match, which resulted in a melee and $250 fine.

June 18, 2016 — Jonothan Mahney reported and suspended for eight matches for abusive and threatening language towards an umpire.

July 16, 2016 — Dylan Lockwood reported for undue rough play in the same match an umpire was assaulted. Lockwood refused to leave the ground and the umpire resorted to appealing to Rosewater’s coach for the player to be removed.

July 16, 2016 — Adam Rumbelow reported for abusive language to an umpire, charging an umpire and striking an umpire.

SA Premier Jay Weatherill is Rosewater FC’s No.1 ticket holder.

Rosewater FC president Ron Chapman said the committee planned to keep the players together this year and the club would seek to affiliate next season and “come back stronger’’.

“We’ll be back next year,’’ said Mr Chapman, a former player who later coached for 19 years. “We’re the only club in Port Adelaide that hasn’t amalgamated with anybody so we’ll stick together and come back stronger.

“We’ll take our penance and come back from adversity even stronger.’’

The decision to dump Rosewater surprised the committee but it accepted the league’s motives, Mr Chapman said.

“The league has to protect umpires, we totally agree with that,’’ he said.

“A few incidents have happened over the past two years, I wish they hadn’t happened but they did so we have to deal with it.’’

Rosewater’s A-grade team was sitting fifth and in line to play Division 5 finals before being dumped.

Rumbelow’s alleged attack on central umpire Craig Trewartha in the Divison 5 clash against Blackfriars Old Scholars was the final breach that led to Rosewater FC’s deregistration.

He is expected to face the league tribunal tonight to answer the charges, which carries a maximum penalty of a lifetime ban.

The league has previously slapped a lifetime ban on several players who had accumulated suspensions of at least 12 games.

Rosewater can reapply to reaffiliate to the SAAFL next season but it will be with strict conditions over the coming three years.

Mr Kernahan said the charges against Rumbleow were “the last straw’’ and the decision to dump Rosewater came after “a history of poor behaviour, particularly to umpires, over a two-year period’’.

“The league has little faith the RFC can enact a short-term plan to arrest what is clearly a pattern of poor and anti-social behaviour both on and off field,’’ Mr Kernahan said.

“But what was really refreshing in our discussion with the Rosewater people today was they demonstrated a genuine will to collaborate with the league to ensure they have a good, viable club going forward.

“That said, any club, whether Rosewater footy club or not, are under no illusion that unless they can comply to basic standards of social behaviour, there’s no place for them in our league.’’

Rosewater was also fined $2000 for bringing the SAAFL into disrepute.

Rosewater FC committee members presented a proposed action plan to curb the bad behaviour — including zero tolerance to umpire abuse — but it was not accepted by the SAAFL board.

The Bulldogs formed in the mid-1880s and joined the SAAFL in 1949. They developed a host of stars as juniors including Port Adelaide Magpies’ Bruce Abernethy, who played AFL with North Melbourne, Collingwood and Adelaide, brothers Che (Essendon, Power), David and Donald Cockatoo-Collins (both Melbourne), Jarrad Poulton (Power), Trent Ormond-Allen (Melbourne, Adelaide) and Brian Cunningham, Port Adelaide Power’s first CEO.

"Let's Go While We're Young"


At the Tribunal last night, Rosewater player Adam Rumbleow was suspended for 20 years after pleading guilty to striking umpire Craig Trewartha.

"Let's Go While We're Young"


Inexcusable behaviour. 20 years seems about right.

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