Club great Wayne Carey has made the startling suggestion North Melbourne’s drafted-in Kangaroos could be on a hit and run AFL mission against Richmond on Friday night.
The Kangaroos flagged resting up to 10 players for their final round clash at Etihad Stadium on Friday night.
Should the Kangaroos lose, they will almost certainly face Richmond again in an elimination final and Carey said those players chosen could give their team an advantage by roughing up the Tigers.
“The Kangaroos now can put in eight to 10 players that are not going to play finals footy,” Carey told the AFL website.
“They can go out and maim Richmond players.
“They can go hard, they can be told by Brad Scott ‘Go out there, hit this side as hard as you can, because it looks like we’ll be playing them again next week’.”
Carey said he felt the AFL needed to change the rules because by giving the Kangaroos the green light to rest so many players, they had allowed them to possibly manipulate the make-up of the finals.
He said it was a “completely different situation” to minor premiers Fremantle resting up to 11 first-choice players for their Port Adelaide match because that game wouldn’t affect finals positions.
“I think the AFL have really opened up a can of worms here and where this goes, I do not know.
“This rule has to change because the one game that had something riding on it all of a sudden has been manipulated by resting players.”
North coach Brad Scott stressed his side would be playing to win.
But Carey said the Kangaroos would prefer to play Richmond, who they have beaten in their last five clashes, in Melbourne in week one of the finals.
A win would set up a possible clash with the Crows in Adelaide or the Western Bulldogs, who beat them last week.
“The Kangaroos would be more than comfortable to lose this one and play them the week after,” he said.