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Carlton Blues, Patrick Cripps, tribunal, appeal, suspension, ban, bump, Callum Ah Chee, West Coast Eagles, Willie Rioli, Matt Rowell, appeal

Jonathan Brown says Carlton will need to use Willy Rioli’s defense to free up skipper Patrick Cripps in this weekend’s win over Melbourne.

Like Cripps, Willie Rioli was suspended for a mid-air collision with Suns’ Matt Rowell and the impact of the Eagles sent the midfielder crashing into the pitch.

Rioli was handed a one-match ban for the serious injury, but won a court challenge to overturn the ban, saying his actions were not “unreasonable”.

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Cripps Lion Kalam Ah Chee has been handed a two-match ban for the same act of concussion on the Gabba turf.

Brown believes he’s a “priority” in Round 1 – the difference being that Cripps’ is not as middle-of-the-road as Rioli’s.

“At the end of the day, when Willie Rioli went with Matty Rowell in the first round, I believe it was a priority. I don’t think there was a rule change,” Brown said of the coaches.

“To me, it looks like Willy Rioli was later (in contact).

“Yes, you could argue that it was a marking contest but it was an aerial contest. One was in play, one was a marking contest.

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“Both players were off the ground. I don’t think Patty Cripps can do much. I think (Rioly’s) is the one that was released looking worse.

Host Nick Riewoldt agreed the Blues should use Riolin’s appeal as the basis for their test if they decide to hold it at 11am AEST on Tuesday.

“Whether you’re jumping in the air or trying to intercept the ball from a handball is irrelevant,” added Brown.

“So they come in (to the court), press play on Willie Rioli’s tape and you come out five minutes later – that’s how it should go down,” Riewoldt said.

Brown felt that the argument that Rioli’s conduct was “unreasonable” should also apply to Cripps.

“Willie Rioli’s argument[was]that he couldn’t reasonably expect to meet in those circumstances and clearly should have been patient — but so was Patty Cripps.

Fans were shocked in Round 1 when Rioli escaped a penalty on Rowell, with some calling for the Eagles to “buy a lotto ticket”.

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Gerard Wiley says the Blues are preparing to appeal on Monday night, but he doesn’t think Rioli’s comparison is as “cookie-cutter” as some believe.

“First they have to show that it’s not a riot. Did we have an option for the second part? he said.

AFL360 co-host Mark Robinson agreed with coach Michael Voss that it was a “split second decision” for Cripps.

“My worst reaction was, ‘Patrick Cripps, you’re gone’ … but I said the same thing to Willie Rioli,” he said.

“We were scared when they came down with appeals and appeals. I don’t think the court can stop Rioli if they stop it.

“But my feeling is that it can’t exist like this in our sport anymore.

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He didn’t want to do it – but what was more important? Wasn’t he doing it, or Ah Chi’s health and well-being?”

Couch host Gary Lyon believes Cripps’ actions deserve a ban, saying it was “not a big surprise” that Match Review handed out a two-match ban on Monday.

“Well, you’re going to catch your breath,” he said.

“I don’t think it’s the game we’re in and we’re in. If that’s not penalized, we’re kidding ourselves.”

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