Melbourne young gun Kysaiah Pickett faces a nervous wait after a reckless high bump on Bulldogs star Bailey Smith in the Demons’ thumping win.
Pickett’s name was taken in the second quarter of Melbourne’s 17. 13. (115) to 9. 11. (65) win at the MCG after flooring Smith behind the play.
The 21-year-old forward was one of the best players on the ground, kicking an equal-game high four goals, but sparked a brawl with a late, head-high bump on Smith.
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Geelong premiership star Cameron Mooney was critical of the bump, saying Pickett was lucky Smith was able to play out the remainder of the contest.
”Are we going to go on ‘what would’ve been?’ I don’t think we can play the game on ‘what could’ve been’. We’ve got to play the game out,” Mooney told Fox Footy.
“He was lucky Kozzy (Pickett) because, in my opinion, it looked like shoulder on shoulder. It was when he rolled it was the back that hit Bailey in the chin. That’s why it was probably low impact and Bailey got straight back up.
“If it was shoulder onto the chin, he’s knocked out.”
In a clash of the 2021 grand finalists, Melbourne ran riot in the second half, kicking eight goals to four in a rampant display.
Ben Brown also booted four goals for Melbourne, while skipper Max Gawn and Charlie Spargo kicked two each.
It was a successful debut for Melbourne’s famed new ruck tandem of Gawn and off-season recruit Brodie Grundy, who finished with 17 disposals, 12 hitouts and a goal, while Gawn added 21 disposals and 21 hitouts.
The Bulldogs’ efforts were led by the tireless Jack Macrae, who finished with an equal-game high 33 disposals alongside Melbourne’s Clayton Oliver.
Melbourne will travel to Brisbane in round two to take on the Lions, while the Bulldogs will host St Kilda at Marvel Stadium.
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