Scott Pendlebury has been the victim of a violent assault himself, but that hasn’t stopped Collingwood’s captain backing Marley Williams to resume his AFL career.
Pendlebury was concussed by an attack in 2009.
His Collingwood teammate Williams was last week convicted in Albany District Court in Western Australia of grievous bodily harm.
Williams will be sentenced in April for the attack on 29-year-old Matthew Robertson during the Christmas holidays in 2012. Robertson received a broken jaw in the incident.
Judge Julie Wager has warned 20-year-old Williams the offence would usually attract an immediate prison term.
Williams was not included in Collingwood’s side that lost to Richmond last weekend in Wangaratta but is expected to play in a Sunday’s practice game against Gold Coast at Metricon Stadium.
“We fully support Marley with everything that’s going on at the moment,” Pendlebury said at a Gold Coast training camp on Wednesday.
Pendlebury was attacked in Lakes Entrance in Victoria five years ago. Charges were laid by Lakes Entrance police but were withdrawn after further investigation, the AFL website reported.
Questioned about his own experience and how it would look for him to back Williams, Pendlebury added: “I can’t talk about what’s happening in his case.
“But as I said, we’re fully supporting Marley as a football club,” he said.
Pendlebury says he realises the media will be giving the case a fair bit of attention.
“I feel like a broken record but we support Marls and we’re just looking for a good week on the track up here,” Pendlebury said.
The skipper says the Magpies have some adjustments to make after their pre-season losses to Geelong and Richmond.
“It’s only early in the year and we’ve shown little patches of that (good football) and we’ve also shown what happens when we’re not fully switched on,” he said.
“We’re just looking to get a four-quarter performance together.”
Doubt remains over whether Williams will be eligible to play in Collingwood’s round-one clash with Fremantle at Etihad Stadium on March 14.
One option is a club ban, although the AFL may choose to step in and take action.
Carlton imposed a two-game suspension on Heath Scotland in 2013 after the defender pleaded guilty to assault and was placed on a two-year, good-behaviour bond.
“Our position is the AFL is reviewing the full circumstances of the Marley Williams case and will hold discussions with Collingwood Football Club before making a determination on his playing eligibility for the home and away season,” AFL spokesman Patrick Keane told theage深圳桑拿网会所,深圳桑拿网,.