MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 25: Sherrin footballs are placed to be collected by Kangaroos players during a North Melbourne Kangaroos training session at the Arden Street Ground on March 25, 2010 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Mark Dadswell/Getty Images)

Local footballer given 36-game ban

A suburban footballer from Keilor in north-west Victoria, has been banned for 36 matches following a vicious off the ball incident which left his opponent with a broken jaw.

Former VFL player and Essendon Doutta Stars player, Simon Clarke, had his jaw broken in three places and is unlikely to play football again, after Keilor’s Leigh Burke struck Clarke from behind during a match on August 6.

Clarke was reportedly attempting to break up a scuffle between two players when he was hit.

He had surgery two days after the incident and has since lost almost 10kg due to being unable to consume solid foods.

Burke faces a life ban if his suspension is upheld, with the AFL’s National Deregistration Policy rules stating that a player who has received 16 weeks of suspension over the course of their careers will be deregistered.