AFL umpires boss contacts Nathan Buckley

AFL umpires boss Wayne Campbell has reached out to Nathan Buckley, admitting Travis Cloke should have received two more free kicks on Sunday.

Collingwood coach Buckley bemoaned the fact Cloke “gets nothing” from umpires after his side went down to Richmond by five points at the MCG.

Campbell conceded Buckley had a right to feel aggrieved after Sunday’s match.

“The review showed he probably should have got two more free kicks in that game, so we certainly acknowledge that,” he told reporters on Monday.

Campbell contacted Buckley on Monday morning and was hoping to catch up with the 2003 Brownlow medallist later this week.

“I certainly listened to his comments and I thought he was quite nice to us actually,” he said.

“I’ve sent him a message and that’s certainly our job, to clarify any ideas that coaches need (clarified) around rules or free kicks.”

However, the former Richmond captain felt it was wrong to suggest there was any kind of trend regarding Cloke this season.

“We’ve umpired marking contests quite well, but that’s not to say we get everyone right,” he said.

Meanwhile, Campbell confirmed a crackdown was imminent regarding head-high contact.

He noted the league on the whole was concerned with the number of players leading with their head in an effort to draw a free kick.

“We wrote to the clubs a month ago to say we thought it was an issue,” he said.

“In the next couple of weeks we’re going to consult with clubs, I think the general feel in the footy world is we need to do something about it.

“We need to work through it fairly quickly … it’s an issue of player safety.

“There seems to be more players doing it.”

It won’t affect those players who shrug their shoulders or drop the knees while being tackled in an effort to ensure the opposition grabs them around the neck or head.

“That’s real hard to adjudicate,” Campbell said of the tactic, which earned North Melbourne forward Lindsay Thomas two set shots last Friday night.

“Everyone seems to think it’s ok.”

North coach Brad Scott launched a spirited defence of Thomas last Friday.

“Anyone who wants to question Lindsay Thomas is kidding themselves,” Scott said.

“They should question the rule-makers and question the umpires before they question any of our players.”

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