Tsitas, Gold Coast's VFL skipper, was slapped with a single-match suspension by the VFL's Match Review Panel after an incident during the Suns' preliminary final win over the Box Hill Hawks at Heritage Bank Stadium last weekend.
The charge handed down by the MRP came from a first-quarter incident including Box Hill's Jacob Koschitzke in a marking contest, with Tsitas' right arm making high contact with the Hawthorn-listed key forward.
The Suns elected to challenge the MRP's decision on Tuesday evening, with the act initially graded as careless conduct, medium impact, and high contact.
If the Suns make it through to the #VFL Grand Final, it could be a nervous wait for James Tsitas...
The midfielder caught Jacob Koschitzke high - Koschitzke popped back up and kicked the goal. pic.twitter.com/pxKqxOldiH
— 7AFL (@7AFL) September 16, 2023
While the Suns opted to contest the charge in the hope of freeing Tsitas for this Sunday's VFL Grand Final between Gold Coast and Werribee Tigers at IKON Park, their unsuccessful result means they will turn to contingency planning in the absence of their skipper.
— Brendan Rhodes (@BRhodesVFL) September 21, 2023
Sunday's decider is scheduled to commence at 3:10 PM (AEST).