New rule set to be brought in to protect players
The AFL is set to try and stamp out and head-knock related injuries in 2013 with the introduction of a concussion substitute.
Exact details of the rule change are yet to be publicly aired, but the new substitute is likely to be able to enter ground when a player is receiving treatment for a head injury.
If the affected player is deemed healthy enough to continue playing in the game, the substitute will return to the bench and await further instructions if required.
The AFL will hold a concussion in football conference this week in the lead up to the first round of the 2013 season, however, Dr Peter Larkins told AFL.com.au he believes the move would be a positive step in ensuring the long-term welfare of players.
“The doctors have been under too much pressure to make the concussion assessment
too quickly,” Larkins said.
“The concussion sub allows them more time to do it in a quiet environment, and the team will not be
“There’s not the pressure from the coaches box yelling down to the bench saying ‘where is he or how long until he’s back?'”
Also expected to be discussed at the conference is the suggested time away from the game a player should spend if he is diagnosed with a concussion, with clubs and players often walking a tightrope between winning and potential lifelong health problems.