Geelong captain Joel Selwood was watched closely during the Cats and Hawks blockbuster match on Monday afternoon, which led many to take issue with his tactical approach to the game.
There has been an elevated amount of discussion among fans and the media about how Selwood tries to draw high contact free kicks during games following a few incidents in his round two performance.
The most prominent free kick the Cats skipper was able to draw was in the opening quarter, when Hawthorn defender James Sicily attempted a tackle and caught him too high. Sicily opted to knock Selwood to the ground in frustration before the umpire decided to blow his whistle and wave Selwood forward for a 50m advance.
Selwood has mastered the ‘art’ of contorting his body in such a way that inclines the umpires to make a free kick call, despite the AFL making a concerted effort to amend it’s rules so that ‘ducking’ is no longer rewarded.
"It annoys people, we do understand."
— 7AFL (@7AFL) April 2, 2018
Selwood appeared on Talking Footy to discuss his unconventional tactics and shared his opinion on the backlash.
“We’re in the fortunate position where we get the umpires come out to us and actually explain how the rule is going to be adjudicated,” Selwood told Talking Footy.
The Cats premiership player knows that his approach to the game upsets his opponents and those who do not think it is fair for him to take advantage of the rule, however he says he is not bothered by it.
“As players we understand you can still take the players on and that’s what I try and do. I have a different way to others to do it and it annoys people, we do understand,” he said.
Selwood is also aware that this has been a trademark of his for a long time, even mentioning that his ability to get extra possessions is an art form in 2012.
“There is a little bit of an art to it,” he told Herald Sun in 2012.
“I will continue to do it until they get changed.”