Kennedy banned from Lions clash
Kennedy banned from Lions clash

West Coast will have to restructure their forward line with Josh Kennedy banned from the clash with the Lions in Brisbane on Saturday.

The AFL match review panel today gave Kennedy a three-match suspension for rough conduct towards Sydney's Zac Jones at Patersons Stadium yesterday. However, the penalty was reduced to one match because of Kennedy's good tribunal record and an early guilty plea.

But Eric Mackenzie was cleared of any offence following an incident with Swan forward Lance Franklin in the same match.

The case involving Hawthorn Brian Lake was sent directly to the AFL Tribunal because of the severity of the choke hold on North Melbourne forward Drew Petrie. The Kangaroo was reprimanded for his part in the scuffle at Etihad Stadium last Friday.

Brisbane's Tom Rockliff will miss the battle with the Eagles after he, too, was handed a one-match ban for striking.

The loss of Kennedy follows the news midfielder Matt Rosa will miss the rest of the season because of torn pectoral muscle.

Rosa, who re-signed with West Coast for another two years last week, sustained his injury in a third-term collision and played no further part.

He will have surgery later this week.

Eagles coach Adam Simpson conceded it would be difficult to make the finals after losing in consecutive weeks to Fremantle and Sydney, teams he predicted would feature in this year's grand final.

"We need belief," he said.

"We need to understand that we're in games and there's opportunities where we can go to that next level and we're not quite doing that at the moment.

"We're competing and effort's been there I think for the last month, in particular. We've turned up to play and thrown the kitchen sink at sides and just haven't been good enough.

"There's areas of our game and personnel we've got to look at, no doubt."

Jeremy McGovern was dealt a reality check in just his sixth AFL appearance after being kept to three disposals before being substituted out in the third term.

"To think he was going to continue this rise of just up and up was … now he's an official AFL senior player," Simpson said. "He had a bad one."

Sydney's 11th win in a row pushed them into top spot for the first time this season - one game clear of Hawthorn, Port Adelaide, Fremantle and Geelong.

Sydney coach John Longmire praised the contribution of Adam Goodes, who booted three goals in breaking the AFL games record for an indigenous player of 340 matches previously held by Andrew McLeod.

The West Australian

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