‘Free Toby’: GWS fans turn out at Optus Stadium pleading for star Toby Greene’s freedom

Staff reportersThe West Australian
VideoThe AFL has slapped GWS bad boy Toby Greene with a three-week ban for making contact with an umpire.

Some Perth footy fans are still appealing for leniency for star Toby Greene, after the controversial Giant was slapped with a three-game ban for making contact with an umpire.

Greene, who travelled to Perth with his GWS teammates, does not know if his three-game ban will stand after the AFL confirmed it would appeal the suspension.

But the hearing will not take place until after the Giants’ season ends.

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GWS fans in Perth made their stance known at Friday night’s semifinal, carrying “Free Toby” signs into Optus Stadium.

Greene’s penalty for his confrontation with umpire Matt Stevic has divided footy fans.

Footy fans brought ‘Free Toby’ signs to Optus Stadium.
Camera IconFooty fans brought ‘Free Toby’ signs to Optus Stadium. Credit: Paul Kane/via AFL Photos

Given the tribunal found Greene’s actions were “aggressive, demonstrative and disrespectful” toward whistle-blower Stevic, AFL’s General Manager Football Operations Andrew Dillon questioned the length of the penalty.

“The AFL had appealed the three-game suspension on the ground that the sanction imposed was manifestly inadequate,” the statement read.

Toby Greene had a brain fade in the win over Sydney.
Camera IconToby Greene had a brain fade in the win over Sydney. Credit: Steve Bell/AFL Photos/via AFL Photos

“Respect for umpires and the safety of umpires in our game is what our sport is built on and must be protected. As the keeper of the code, the AFL has a responsibility to act in the interests of all in the sport.”

GWS captain Stephen Coniglio has confirmed the club will address the issue of Greene’s repeated discipline problems after the season, but stopped short of condemning his star teammate.

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