Star GWS forward Jeremy Cameron was left with a bloody nose as his side crashed to a 21-point defeat to Fremantle in Sunday’s AFL clash at Domain Stadium.
A dazed Cameron was forced from the field late in the opening term after copping an elbow from Dockers defender Zac Dawson.
Dawson, playing his first match of the year, is almost certain to come under scrutiny from the AFL’s match review panel over the incident, which occurred while both players were lying on the ground after competing for a ball.
Dawson wasn’t facing Cameron when he swung his right elbow back, but the incident still looked ugly enough to warrant closer attention.
Cameron required extensive bandaging around his head to stem the bleeding, and he gave Dawson a big spray when he returned to the field for the start of the second quarter.
The 22-year-old’s nose bled throughout the match, and he finished with just two goals as the Dockers ran out 12.12 (84) to 9.9 (63) winners.
Dockers goalsneak Michael Walters booted four goals, while Aaron Sandilands was a force in the ruck.
Fremantle dominated most of the key stats throughout the contest, but their sloppy execution kept GWS in the contest until midway through the third quarter.
Danyle Pearce, Hayden Crozier, Michael Barlow, and Chris Mayne all missed easy goals in the first half, while defender-cum-forward Alex Pearce didn’t make the distance on two occasions from 45m out.
The Giants started the third term full of run, and a boilover loomed after they closed the margin to just 12 points.
But an umpiring howler halted GWS in their tracks.
The Giants should have been awarded a free kick in their defensive half when the ball bounced off Docker Alex Pearce’s foot and went out of bounds on the full.
But the boundary umpire instead awarded the free kick to Fremantle, with the home side scoring a goal from their foray forward.
The Dockers added another two unanswered goals to open up a 33-point lead by the final break, with GWS unable to reel in the deficit.
The result all but guarantees Fremantle a top-two berth, with the ladder-leading Dockers now three wins clear of third spot.
GWS remain half a win adrift of eighth spot ahead of next week’s home match against struggling Essendon.
The Giants lost Matt Buntine to concussion in the second term, while ruckman Tom Downie was forced off with a head knock of his own in the third quarter.
Tempers threatened to boil over early in the final quarter when a number of players were involved in a wrestle.
Cameron was in the thick of the action, with the melee leaving him with blood all over his face yet again.