Periodically, throughout the year, Geoff Stone will be sitting down to talk with Adelaide captain Taylor Walker about his team's performances and the hottest news stories from around the league. This is the first instalment.
Hawthorn footballer James Sicily finds himself under scrutiny by Match Review Officer Michael Christian after footage surfaced of Sicily acting exactly as you would expect if you just saw a picture of his face.
In the final quarter of the Easter Monday clash between Hawthorn and Geelong, Sicily appears to drop his knee into the head of Geelong’s Joel Selwood during an off-the-ball scuffle. Further video analysis appears to show that of course he did, just look at him.
Christian, speaking to ASW, refused to make any definitive judgements until he was able to complete his formal match review process.
“I can’t make any comment on the incident until I’ve seen it presented in context in a timely manner. I’m not going to entertain any audience on the matter until due process has been carried out,” said Christian.
“Still, he looks like the fuckin’ type, hey?” he continued.
Hawthorn coach Alistair Clarkson, commenting in February to AFL.com.au, admitted that Sicily had troubles with anger issues.
"With Sicily, there is no point trying to sweep things under the carpet," Clarkson said.
"He has some things in his temperament and with being able to push aside the emotions of the game and we still see evidence in stages of games when he just loses it.
“Actually, not just in games. The other week Poppy (teammate Paul Puopolo) brought his new puppy to training. James doesn’t have a puppy, but he really wanted a puppy, and he got so upset he took an axe to all the showerheads in the changeroom. Now the water just sprays straight forward out of the wall.”
A source within the club, who chose to remain anonymous, tells of two more recent incidents that have prompted Clarkson to seek outside help with Sicily’s anger management.
“The first one was just before the first round. Sicily had a brand new harmonica that he was really proud of, and he brought it to training and was blowing on it all smug, but he couldn’t really play a tune or anything,” said the source.
“Schoenmakers asked if he could have a go and he’s really good on the harmonica. It’s like his first love. So he plays this amazing tune and Sicily got so upset that when he took the harmonica back he just threw it as hard as he could. It smashed a mug of tea that Burgoyne was drinking at the time. Burgoyne just looked forlorn and a single tear fell from his face. I’ll never forget it.
“The other incident was Wednesday last week. Tom Mitchell had bought himself these new shoes, you know, as a treat for his 54 touches. Sicily got jealous and stood on them. Didn’t even pretend it was an accident. He just looked in Mitchell’s face and sneered. Mitchell’s mood just dropped. He cancelled the movie night he’d been planning. They were going to watch 10 Things I Hate About You. It’s Titch’s (Mitchell) favourite film.”
Anger management professionals are expected to arrive at the club this week. Michael Christian is expected to give his match review findings later today. James Sicily is expected to do a burnout out of the carpark while giving everyone the finger.