AFL crowd crackdown unacceptable: Kennett

bigstock Melbourne Australia November 275086624 1

A crackdown on AFL crowd behaviour is unacceptable with league hierarchy mistakenly believing they're a "social benchmark", Hawthorn president Jeff Kennett says.

Kennett doesn't believe Marvel Stadium management is solely behind an increased security presence during weekend games.

Stadium management have conceded they went too far with a heightened level of security which left some fans uneasy.

But ground management maintain the AFL wasn't behind the move - which Kennett doesn't believe.

"I don't accept that the Marvel Stadium did it on their own - it is an asset owned by the AFL," Kennett told 3AW radio on Monday.

"The AFL have done a great number of very good things in developing our code.

"But they have allowed themselves to become the sort of social benchmark for every social issue in the community.

"Whether it is same sex marriage, whether it is racism, whether it is crowd behaviour.

"That's not their job."

Kennett questioned whether security staff were "new arrivals" to Australia with sufficient knowledge of the game to police crowd behaviour.

"I'm not being racist when I say this, but when I saw some of the footage, the people who are making judgements while they wear these authoritative coats are not people who appear to have a great knowledge of our game," he said.

"And yet they make judgements about what's correct and what's not correct."

Kennett said the AFL and security staff should realise spectators attended games to relax and support their club,

"What is happening now is unacceptable," he said.

"The AFL have got to understand they have a massive responsibility to the welfare of all those who attend the games.

"Because that is the moment of time when the fans can get away from home, get away from work and just watch their tribe perform in a competitive battle.

"That's when they can let their emotions run free."

Marvel Stadium chief executive Michael Green on Sunday said he would oversee a review of procedures which included security staff more frequently patrolling aisles during Friday and Saturday night games at the venue.

The move followed a Carlton supporter being ejected from Marvel Stadium the previous week for calling an umpire a 'bald-headed flog'.

AFL chief executive Gillon McLachlan has denied the league has directed any crackdown on fan behaviour.

© AAP 2019

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