It seems our overpaid sporting heroes have celebrated Christmas and kicked off the New Year in predictable form with a series of drunken bashings and assaults across the country. No word on any rapes yet, as sadly the clubs would still be negotiating hard behind closed doors. Below, we cover the two most serious miscreants: Simon Goodwin and Heath Black.
The first incident, just prior to Christmas, saw a murder of Adelaide Crows launch an extended drinking bout at pub Raglan's (co-owned by Speccy favourite Wayne Carey). Players still drinking in the mid-morning included Mark Ricciuto, Rhett Biglands, Ben Hudson and Nathan Bock. And, of course, Simon Goodwin. Witnesses reported misbehaviour ranging from "play-fighting" in the streets to throwing beverages on a parking inspector. Things turned ugly when a photographer from the Tiser, Tait Schmaal, showed up:
When [Simon Goodwin] noticed Schmaal, Goodwin approached and shoved the photographer before attempting to snatch his camera out of his hands.
"If you run any photos, I'll f...ing kill you," Goodwin said to Schmaal, who asked: "Is that a threat?"
Goodwin replied that it was.
The current Crows club champion then pushed Schmaal against a wall and pressed his forearm against Schmaal's throat.
"You're f...ed if you run this," Goodwin said to Schmaal.
Raglan's co-owner Rob Kent had to pull Goodwin's arms away from Schmaal.
Mark Ricciuto also told Advertiser reporter Rebekah Devlin that no Crows players would deal with The Advertiser if the incident was publicised.
Biglands and Scott Welsh tried to defuse the situation - Welsh physically restrained an agitated Ricciuto and Biglands attempted to convince Devlin not to publish the pictures. (The Advertiser, 23/12/05)
In my book, that's at least assault and making threats to kill. Very serious matters. Not to mention the dubious blackmail attempt. While statements were made, police are not taking this any further. Oh, and by the way: does anyone know if it's even possible to drink continuously until 11am the following morning without taking drugs? If you've ever managed this, I'd love to hear from you.
Simon Goodwin Spreading Christmas Cheer
Source: Adelaide Advertiser
So, in light of this team-wide tanty and bout of drunken violence I propose the team is renamed the Adealaide Crowes. After our Rusty. Yep, they sure are 30-Odd Football Grunts, without an Ordinary Fear of the Law.
On a high note, it seems the legal system is actually catching up with an AFL player in the New Year! Even more bizarre: the police service that managed this feat was the notoriously corrupt Western Australian force. Of course, it makes more sense when we note that it was one of their own on the receiving end of footy player biff, and not just a humble citizen.
Fremantle Docker Heath Black has been bailed and will face the Magistrates Court this Friday after his Day at the Races, in which a police officer was allegedly assaulted.
Black was arrested and charged with assault causing bodily harm, obstructing police officers and assaulting a public officer. (The Age, 3/1/06)
Nice work, Heath; maybe you should avoid beating cops and restrict yourself to smaller fry. The cops will turn a blind eye to most things, but not assaults on their own members.
Just in case anyone was in doubt that bad off-field behaviour could have career implications, Simon Goodwin has been named Adelaide Crowes captain.
That's right, "drinking" until 11am and then making threats to kill is not an impediment to taking the most senior player leadership position at his club. Goodwin's appointment highlights just how much of a joke these positions really are. After all, if threats of murder aren't enough to cast a pall, what about a recent footy gambling scandal? Might that place a question mark over your judgement and leadership potential?
Nah, it's just a footy club and the captain is entirely divorced from decision-making in the modern game. Do you think Ronald McDonald sets corporate strategy at Maccas? It's the same with these bozos. No one takes it seriously. (Unlike the role of "spiritual leader", which actually does have an influence on the players, as we've seen further west.)
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