Shane Mumford at a SCG training session. Photo: Wolter Peeters
ON THE eve of the biggest game of their respective careers, Sydney ruckman Shane Mumford has spoken for the first time about the nightclub punch-up in the US with Hawthorn star Jordan Lewis.
Mumford and Lewis will be key components when the clubs meet in the grand final on Saturday. Mumford is getting back to peak form after injury, and Lewis - who was a member of the 2008 premiership-winning Hawks - is consistently one of Hawthorn's best players.
While the Swans confirmed at the time that Mumford was involved in ''an incident with a player from another team'' at the Los Angeles nightclub Teddys in 2010, he hasn't spoken publicly about the incident.
Hawthorn's Jordan Lewis at a press conference. Photo: Eddie Jim
''Look, I'm happy to talk to about it. Yeah, it was just an altercation that probably shouldn't have happened,'' Mumford said yesterday.
''There's no ill-feelings towards Jordan any more, it was just a one-off thing … that shouldn't have happened, but did.
''It was just one of those things that you look back on and you go, 'yeah that really shouldn't have happened', but as I said, it did, and there's nothing we can do about it now.''
Mumford headed to the US with some of his teammates after their season had finished with a semi-final loss to the Western Bulldogs.
It was after the ruckman's first season with the Swans, having headed north from Geelong at the end of 2009.
Lewis and some of his Hawthorn teammates were on their end-of-season trip to the US when the two groups ran into each other at the nightclub, a haunt for many of Hollywood's rich and famous.
While Mumford didn't go into specifics about what happened on that October night, it's believed that Lewis had taunted Mumford about his weight before the pair came to blows.
The Swan apparently knocked Lewis to the ground, although he did not injure the Hawthorn star.
It's also believed that Lewis' teammate, Clinton Young, had stepped in to try to stop the altercation and was caught in the crossfire.
''I contacted the club straight away and as far as they were concerned, that was the end of it,'' Mumford said. ''I hadn't done anything wrong so there was nothing that really came of it.''
Since then the pair have met on the field in three matches and there has not been any follow-up to their Los Angeles night.
''On the field there has been no ill-feeling towards each other,'' Mumford said. ''We don't go hunting for each other or anything like that. As I said, it was just one of those things that happened that shouldn't have happened.''
The Swans at the time said they were satisfied Mumford ''did what he could to avoid the situation'', and they ''deemed that no further action was necessary''.
Lewis may not have had the best of the bout, but he has been the one laughing last, as the Hawks have beaten the Swans in each of the three games Mumford and he have played since the altercation, including a semi-final win which ended Sydney's season in 2011.
On Saturday, we will see if Mumford gets his turn to laugh.