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Geelong champion Jimmy Bartel slams diving accusations as rubbish

Bartel lurched forward, winning a free kick.

Bartel lurched forward, winning a free kick. Photo: Channel Seven

Geelong champion Jimmy Bartel has stridently defended himself against accusations of exaggerating contact with Hawthorn opponent Matthew Suckling last Saturday night, labelling the perception that he dived to win a free kick "a load of rubbish."

Bartel floated forward after what appeared to be slight contact from Suckling during an aerial contest involving Suckling and fellow Hawk Jordan Lewis midway through the second quarter of the match at the MCG.

After landing on all fours, Bartel was awarded a free kick and subsequently goaled. He was then subjected to raucous boos from Hawthorn fans, and has endured a week of condemnation for what was widely perceived as a dive.

'It was over-acting there': Cameron Ling.

'It was over-acting there': Cameron Ling. Photo: Channel Seven

The 2007 Brownlow Medalist was adamant that his intention was never to deceive the umpire, decrying what he felt was criticism of his character.

"I think it's a load of rubbish to be honest. If you're running flat out for the ball and you're jumping and you've got someone who puts any sort of contact behind you you're going to go forward," Bartel told radio SEN on Thursday morning.

"I'm not sure what people wanted me to do, maybe flip my legs out and land on my back?"

"At no stage did I actually think for a free kick. I just got perfect timing... even Suckling fell over doing it.

"I just put my hands down actually to brace myself for a fall. Probably in hindsight I shouldn't do that, I should just fall on my back or something like that."

Bartel was not cited by the match review panel for the incident. The MRP tends only to charge players with staging if they fall without any contact being made.

The 30-year-old suggested that while he did not mind the jeers, he was affronted by the criticism he has received this week in the media. Bartel's former Cats teammate Cameron Ling said on Channel Seven during the game that Bartel was "well and truly acting," but later argued that he should not be "hung" for the offence.

"It sort of questions a bit of your integrity, the way you play the game. I feel over my career I feel I've played the game hard and fair and within the rules," Bartel said of the backlash.

"It's pretty disappointing. I've played a lot of footy and people think straight away what I was doing was playing for a free kick.

"I can see it looks bad, but I can only tell you how I was feeling in the moment.

"I'm not sure what I'm supposed to do, how I'm supposed to contort my body backwards and mark it.

"Probably the fact I kicked a goal out of it made everyone more upset and I can understand that."

The 269-game veteran indicated he was not losing any sleep about the criticism, but he would continue to defend himself if challenged about the incident.

He did so at the start of his interview on SEN when former Hawk great and media pundit Dermott Brereton facetiously asked Bartel to rate the degree of difficulty for the dive.

"I've moved on and put it to bed, but if someone asks me what I thought about it, I'm going to say what I think. I always have."

89 comments so far

  • There's a bit of the doping professional cyclist in you Jimmy...deny, deny deny. Don't take the public as fools. Even two of your former captains couldn't defend you.

    Commenter
    Jonty
    Location
    Prahran
    Date and time
    August 28, 2014, 10:29AM
    • bartel has form in this area - look forward pocket city end 2011 GF

      Commenter
      Gaz
      Location
      Yarrawonga
      Date and time
      August 28, 2014, 11:16AM
    • Oh come on. Comparing a 50/50 free kick explanation to a drug taker/denier - is a fair way off the mark.

      Commenter
      Jack66
      Location
      Torquay
      Date and time
      August 28, 2014, 11:24AM
    • Hawthorn supporters are a breed apart aren't they. They were booing the umpires at quarter time despite a 5-3 free kick count in their favour. Their absolute belief that they are entitled to receive every free kick is staggering. Especially coming after the umpires handed them the Grand Final last year, you'd think they'd be more grateful to the men in white.

      Commenter
      Person
      Location
      Place
      Date and time
      August 28, 2014, 1:15PM
    • @person Nice try - diverting attention away from your merry band of free kick stagers in your team. Just how did the umpires hand Hawthorn the grand final last year. You are a muppet of the highest order, one might say you are in the nose bleed section.

      Commenter
      Darren
      Location
      MCG
      Date and time
      August 28, 2014, 1:51PM
    • It's not just Jimmy and bit of a team Geelong thing. I can't recall having a conversation about the team without the subject of ducking and diving coming up. They don't seem to care about negative perceptions if it gets them free kicks. Seems to be inherent in the game they play and if anyone doubts me just watch them next time they come under scoreboard pressure. Selwood pushes back and stays there to win some frees and relieve. The game against Carlton a few weeks back was a classic case of Geelong putting Carlton under enormous free kick pressure to stem the Blues run on. The umpires seem to revel in in too and the Carlton game was absolute free kick carnage in the second half.

      Commenter
      Barney
      Date and time
      August 28, 2014, 3:09PM
  • I'm not really sure why these reports keep mentioning "contact". I saw the game, and the TV replays afterwards, and neither of the hawthorn players actually made contact with Bartel. This is clear from at least a couple of angles. Jimmy is correct when he said he got his timing perfect - he dove at exactly the right moment to make it look from the umps perspective that was pushed in the back. Except he wasn't touched. The criticism of Bartel is totally valid, it was a cynical dive. He would have been better off admitting it, declaring it out of character and moving on.

    Commenter
    uh-huh
    Date and time
    August 28, 2014, 10:34AM
    • I disagree, I can clearly see contact. But it was minimal and certainly not the cause of his sudden thrust foward (well after the contact). Clearly it was a dive. Yes he put his hands down to brace for the fall as he said, but he thrust himself forward so hard he almost did a somersault.
      Although this was a pretty bad example, players do exaggerate contact and play for frees all the time, so I am more offended by Bartel treating everyone like a fool than anything.

      Commenter
      Joe
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      August 28, 2014, 11:38AM
    • Correct uh-uh.
      In fact I'd say Jimmy's was the prettiest swan-dive I ve seen in around thirty years.
      My main football code is Rugby Union, but I also follow follow soccer and as well as the AFL. Whilst soccer players - particularly from southern Europe - are particularly adept divers, the best swan-dive I've ever seen took place at Manly Oval in Sydney way back in the early 1980s.
      Then Randwick captain, Ray Evans, faked being knocked out cold by Manly player Greg Marr in front of the ref. Marr was wrongly sent off as a consequence. Evans 'miraculously' recovered and continued, but nobody - including other Randwick players - spoke to him after the game! Obviously everyone was ashamed of his conduct.
      Meanwhile Jimmy, your effort was darn good. Hope everyone at Geelong is still speaking to you.

      Commenter
      Chas Lima
      Date and time
      August 28, 2014, 1:33PM
    • @Joe: Yes, he claims "you're jumping and you've got someone who puts any sort of contact behind you you're going to go forward", but if there was any contact it was in the lower back. So why did he fling his head forward?!? If someone pushes you in the lower back, either your whole body goes forward, or possibly your head goes back relative to the rest of your body. He may have felt contact and, in a split second decision, decided to try to milk the free kick, but I'd have more respect for him if he was honest about it now.

      Commenter
      Phil
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      August 28, 2014, 3:03PM

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AFL 2015

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COL 140 vs STK 66 Stats
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CAR 84 vs ESS 105 Stats
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CAR 45 vs COL 120 Stats
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ESS 82 vs NTH 93 Stats
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ADE 119 vs STK 73 Stats
HAW 155 vs MEL 50 Stats
CAR 57 vs GWS 135 Stats
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WBU 88 vs FRE 101 Stats
RIC 105 vs COL 100 Report Stats
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Fri, 22 MayTimes shown AEST
GEE 140 vs CAR 63 Report Stats
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STK 78 vs WCE 131 Report Stats
GWS 108 vs ADE 84 Report Stats
GCF 63 vs COL 132 Report Stats
HAW 69 vs SYD 73 Report Stats
FRE 115 vs NTH 42 Report Stats
Sun, 24 MayTimes shown AEST
ESS 136 vs BRI 78 Report Stats
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Fri, 29 MayTimes shown AEST
SYD 122 vs CAR 62 Report Stats
Sat, 30 MayTimes shown AEST
HAW 93 vs GCF 40 Report Stats
MEL 54 vs PTA 115 Report Stats
WBU 113 vs GWS 68 Report Stats
RIC 72 vs ESS 59 Report Stats
ADE 57 vs FRE 68 Report Stats
Sun, 31 MayTimes shown AEST
BRI 86 vs STK 108 Report Stats
COL 112 vs NTH 95 Report Stats
WCE 120 vs GEE 64 Report Stats
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Fri, 05 JunTimes shown AEST
FRE vs RIC 20:10Domain Stadium
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CAR vs ADE 13:40MCG
GCF vs SYD 16:35MS
ESS vs GEE 19:20ES
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GWS vs BRI 13:10Spotless Stadium
NTH vs WCE 15:20BA
STK vs HAW 16:40ES
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PTA vs GEE 19:50Adelaide Oval
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GCF vs FRE 13:40MS
WCE vs ESS 16:35Domain Stadium
NTH vs SYD 19:20ES
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CAR vs PTA 13:40MCG
GWS vs NTH 16:35Spotless Stadium
WBU vs BRI 19:20ES
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GEE vs MEL 15:20SS
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FRE vs COL 20:10Domain Stadium
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SYD vs RIC 19:50SCG
Sat, 27 JunTimes shown AEST
HAW vs ESS 13:40MCG
BRI vs ADE 16:35G
STK vs WBU 19:20ES
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CAR vs GCF 15:20ES
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Round 14
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COL vs HAW 19:50MCG
Sat, 04 JulTimes shown AEST
RIC vs GWS 13:40MCG
GCF vs NTH 16:35MS
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RIC vs CAR 19:50MCG
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ESS vs MEL 13:40MCG
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GWS vs STK 13:10Spotless Stadium
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Fri, 17 JulTimes shown AEST
NTH vs ESS 19:50ES
Sat, 18 JulTimes shown AEST
GEE vs WBU 13:45SS
GCF vs GWS 14:10MS
COL vs WCE 16:35ES
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FRE vs CAR 19:40Domain Stadium
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MEL vs BRI 13:10MCG
PTA vs ADE 15:20Adelaide Oval
STK vs RIC 16:40ES
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Round 17
Fri, 24 JulTimes shown AEST
CAR vs HAW 19:50ES
Sat, 25 JulTimes shown AEST
GWS vs GEE 13:45SO
ADE vs GCF 14:10Adelaide Oval
RIC vs FRE 16:35MCG
ESS vs PTA 19:20ES
BRI vs NTH 19:20G
Sun, 26 JulTimes shown AEST
WBU vs COL 13:10ES
MEL vs STK 15:20MCG
WCE vs SYD 16:40Domain Stadium
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Round 18
Fri, 31 JulTimes shown AEST
HAW vs RIC 19:50MCG
Sat, 01 AugTimes shown AEST
GEE vs BRI 13:45SS
COL vs MEL 14:10MCG
SYD vs ADE 16:35SCG
CAR vs NTH 19:20ES
GCF vs WCE 19:20MS
Sun, 02 AugTimes shown AEST
PTA vs STK 13:10Adelaide Oval
ESS vs WBU 15:20ES
FRE vs GWS 16:40Domain Stadium
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Round 19
Fri, 07 AugTimes shown AEST
ADE vs RIC 19:50Adelaide Oval
Sat, 08 AugTimes shown AEST
COL vs CAR 13:45MCG
WBU vs PTA 14:10ES
BRI vs GCF 16:35G
GEE vs SYD 19:20SS
WCE vs HAW 19:40Domain Stadium
Sun, 09 AugTimes shown AEST
MEL vs NTH 13:10MCG
GWS vs ESS 15:20Spotless Stadium
STK vs FRE 16:40ES
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Round 20
Fri, 14 AugTimes shown AEST
SYD vs COL 19:50SCG
Sat, 15 AugTimes shown AEST
ESS vs ADE 13:45ES
NTH vs STK 14:10BA
PTA vs GWS 16:35Adelaide Oval
GEE vs HAW 19:20MCG
BRI vs CAR 19:20G
Sun, 16 AugTimes shown AEST
RIC vs GCF 13:10MCG
WBU vs MEL 15:20ES
FRE vs WCE 16:40Domain Stadium
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Round 21
Fri, 21 AugTimes shown AEST
HAW vs PTA 19:50ES
Sat, 22 AugTimes shown AEST
COL vs RIC 13:45MCG
GWS vs SYD 14:10Spotless Stadium
GCF vs ESS 16:35MS
STK vs GEE 19:20ES
ADE vs BRI 19:40Adelaide Oval
Sun, 23 AugTimes shown AEST
NTH vs FRE 13:10ES
CAR vs MEL 15:20MCG
WCE vs WBU 16:40Domain Stadium
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Round 22
Fri, 28 AugTimes shown AEST
GEE vs COL 19:50MCG
Sat, 29 AugTimes shown AEST
GWS vs CAR 13:45Spotless Stadium
HAW vs BRI 14:10AS
NTH vs WBU 16:35ES
ESS vs RIC 19:20MCG
GCF vs PTA 19:20MS
Sun, 30 AugTimes shown AEST
ADE vs WCE 13:10Adelaide Oval
STK vs SYD 15:20ES
FRE vs MEL 16:40Domain Stadium
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Round 23
Fri, 04 SepTimes shown AEST
COL vs ESS 00:00MCG
RIC vs NTH 00:00ES
HAW vs CAR 00:00MCG
GEE vs ADE 00:00SS
SYD vs GCF 00:00SCG
MEL vs GWS 00:00ES
BRI vs WBU 00:00G
PTA vs FRE 00:30Adelaide Oval
WCE vs STK 02:00Domain Stadium
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AFL 2015
Overall standings
Team P W L D % Pts
Fremantle 9 9 0 0 151.61 36
West Coast Eagles 9 7 2 0 161.19 28
Sydney Swans 9 7 2 0 134.49 28
Collingwood 9 6 3 0 128.24 24
GWS Giants 9 6 3 0 110.26 24
Hawthorn 9 5 4 0 151.26 20
Adelaide Crows 9 5 4 0 113.37 20
Richmond 9 5 4 0 108.86 20
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