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‘Severe panic’: Leigh Matthews has a theory about why there’s a push for a substitute

Sportsday
Article image for ‘Severe panic’: Leigh Matthews has a theory about why there’s a push for a substitute

Leigh Matthews says the AFL’s delay in deciding whether the substitute will return this season is possibly being driven by “severe panic” within the industry over the length of quarters.

The idea of bringing back the sub originated due to concussion after the league tightened rules around head knocks, but there has since been a push for the substitution to be activated for any game-ending injury.

Under the proposal, any player who is removed from the game would be unable to play the following week.

Leigh Matthews said it was interesting the idea had only emerged publicly in the week leading up to the first round.

“I think it’s panicked coaches and panicked administrators,” Leigh Matthews said on 3AW.

“All this is about better maintaining a 22 vs 22 because they are concerned about this extra time.

“They’ve got used to playing short games.”

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Sportsday
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