Geelong’s Tom Stewart is reportedly immensely regretful following his shocking elbow on Richmond’s Dion Prestia which has left the AFL world in shock. 

It was midway through the first quarter of Saturday’s Cats v Tigers game when Stewart took out Prestia with his left arm, leaving him face down on the field, eventually being taken off the field due to a concussion. 

Now, with Stewart facing a lengthy suspension for the act, Geelong coach Chris Scott has opened up about the immediate regret felt by the player. 

“I’ve known Tom for a long time and he is a scrupulously fair player and just a fantastic, strong character – fundamental to what we do at Geelong,” Scott said. 

“That’s partly because when I spoke to him post-game, he just said: ‘I’ve just made a horrible error and I feel terrible about it … I ran past the ball and I chose to bump, I didn’t mean to do it, but gee it was terrible execution and I’m going to pay the price for it’. 

“I wouldn’t usually be this expansive, but I think it speaks to the man. He knows he’s done the wrong thing. Was it deliberate? Of course it wasn’t. He’s made an error and, as people do that I admire, he’s prepared to stand up and say ‘I was wrong’.

“It doesn’t help then the idea of restorative justice still exists. Like they (the Tigers) lose one of their best players, but we don’t run away from that fact. But he should have some comfort in the fact that it’s not him and it was an error of execution and nothing more.”

However, fans on social media were not as understanding of the act, with many citing the incident as an example of why the AFL needs a send-off rule similar to a red card in soccer. 

Stewart is expected to miss extended time due to the incident, but Richmond will also be without Prestia for at least next round’s clash against the West Coast Eagles due to the AFL’s 12-day concussion protocols. 

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