No double standards over Hodge ban: Clarkson
Tuesday, March 14, 2017 - 2:40 PM

from afl.com.au

HAWTHORN coach Alastair Clarkson has dismissed suggestions of double standards over former captain Luke Hodge's club-imposed suspension.

Hodge will sit out the club's round one clash with Essendon as punishment for failing to attend a training session.

However, he didn't miss any games after a drink-driving charge on the eve of the 2015 finals series.

Hodge was fined $5000 by the Hawks' leadership group in consultation with Clarkson and then-football manager Chris Fagan - after recording a blood-alcohol reading of 0.068.

He was also fined $450 and docked 10 demerit points by police.

"One's been treated by the law and one has been treated by our footy club," Clarkson told SEN radio on Tuesday.

"The one treated by the law is no different to you or anyone else having a drink.

"He's allowed to have a drink, he wasn't playing at the time.

"In terms of the protocols we have at our footy club, he didn't go outside them except in regards to the law, and the law said he tipped slightly over the edge in terms of having that drink.

"In terms of compliance of what we have established at our footy club, he didn't step outside that.

"With this one he did.

"According to what we guide our players on in terms of their trademark and what they are expected to do, then that one was outside of their boundaries."

Clarkson said he didn't have any input in the leadership group's decision to suspend Hodge since he was overseas at the time, but that he agreed with it.

"We've got some protocols it's a little bit different from the old school when the coach has a heavy hand in everything," Clarkson said.

"Our leadership group has dealt with these sort of things for the last eight or 10 years really.

"They are the ones who are best suited to make decisions around violations to our trademark that are reasonably minor."

Clarkson wouldn't go into details about why Hodge missed training, but it has been reported he hosted his brother's 21st birthday party the day before.

"We got expectations of our players that they will inform us if they can't be at training and Hodgey inadvertently didn't," he said.

"For reasons that he will want to declare at some point in time, we've got expectations, he didn't meet them and we've got consequences around that.

"Hodgey is the bloke who has set the standards for a long period of time as the captain of our footy club and I suppose with the new leadership of Roughy, he felt he couldn't be the first culprit that was given a pardon when he had gone outside the boundaries of our trademark.

"He puts his hand up and accepted responsibility for not communicating properly with the club and we get on with it."


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