North Albury co-coach Daniel Leslie’s season is over after he was suspended by the O and M tribunal for two matches.
Leslie pleaded not guilty to the charge of unbecoming conduct after an investigation was launched following an incident with Corowa-Rutherglen’s Jay O’Donoghue on July 22.
After around three hours, the three-man tribunal delivered its guilty verdict.
“Any finding of guilt for kicking is serious,” chairman Wayne Taylor said.
“Dan has a virtual clean record (he received one-match for abuse in 2006), in our regards, a clean record.
Any finding of guilt for kicking is serious ... and we find a two-match suspension.Wayne Taylor
“We factor in there was no injury.
“It was slightly lower impact … we find a two-match suspension.”
A bitterly disappointed Leslie did not wish to comment.
Corowa-Rutherglen called two witnesses in Tracy O’Donoghue, Jay’s mother, and John O’Donoghue, his uncle, who were watching the game a short distance away at Corowa’s John Foord Oval.
John said he saw Leslie deliver three kicks to the side of Jay O’Donoghue’s head after the Roos’ player had tackled the Hoppers’ leader to the ground and won a free kick for holding the ball.
He said the first kick rocked Jay’s head back.
Tracy O’Donoghue said she saw Leslie kick her son four or five times in the forehead and face.
She said as a mother, it was distressful.
Jay O’Donoghue said Leslie kicked him three times.
The league video didn’t show the incident.
Hoppers’ witness Joel Klemke said at no stage did he see his team-mate kick Jay O’Donoghue.
In his submission, Leslie’s advocate Mark Deegan maintained the Roos targeted Leslie.
He said the calling for an investigation against Leslie in round one was frivolous.
Following the guilty verdict, Roos’ advocate Craig Spencer said it was not a witch-hunt, but the head had to be protected.