Carlton sneak past Fremantle after crazy finish at Adelaide Oval

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Controversy has erupted late in Carlton’s 10.13 (73) to 9.9 (63) victory over Fremantle at Adelaide Oval.

The drama began when Carlton was trailing by two points with 90 seconds left on the clock.

Blues midfielder George Hewett slammed a ball into the forward 50m arc which was marked by Matthew Cottrell.

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Fremantle was adamant James Aish had touched the ball right after it left Hewett’s boot and replays did appear to see some deviation on the Dockers’ arm and even his flowing locks.

“It’s marked by Cottrell!” Anthony Hudson yelled in commentary. “It is marked by Cottrell.

“Dockers claim it was touched, but the mark has been paid and it can’t be overruled now unless a field umpire had a clear look at it.

“Watch the hair of Aish. Did it brush the long hair of Aish? It doesn’t matter now.”

Cottrell duly slotted the goal to give the Blues a four-point lead with 40 seconds left, but the drama was far from over.

It then slowly emerged that Carlton was being awarded another shot at goal directly after Cottrell’s effort.

“I think there’s a free kick coming Carlton’s way for abuse,” Jason Dunstall said.

“Unbelievable controversy here. It’s a double kick, we’re waiting for confirmation as to who takes it,” Hudson added.

There was huge conjecture over whether the free kick had been paid in the centre and then upgraded to a 50 metre penalty or if it had originally been awarded in the forward arc.

It appeared on replay the free kick was indeed awarded in the forward 50m area for dissent by an unnamed Fremantle player.

Matthew Kennedy was awarded the shot from directly in front and about 30 metres out and he slotted it as Carlton claimed its first win from eight attempts at the ground.

“We’ve been so complimentary of Freo, the discipline, the pressure and everything they brought,” Dunstall said.

“But they lost their cool. They lost their cool when they thought the ball was touched off the boot and the umpire didn’t pay it.

“The one thing you’ve got to do is keep your cool.

“They lost it. They would’ve had a minute to try to get a centre clearance and try to go forward.

“But obviously they were too vociferous with their protests over the ball being touched before Cottrell marked it.”

Asked after the game on Fox Footy what had happened at the end of the match, Carlton skipper Patrick Cripps replied: “I’m not 100 per cent sure. I was nervous the ball might’ve been touched off the mark when Cotts kicked the goal.

“So I thought it might’ve been a review, but I think it was dissent.

“So (we) got another goal and it made our job a bit easier out in the middle. You take those ones when you can.”

There was a strong reaction to the incredible finish on social media.

“Extraordinary finish,” journalist Ashley Browne tweeted. “AFL needs to explain what just happened. No good having everyone just guessing. Put (umpire) Matt Stevic up (for interview) for one minute.”

“Sorry, but the umpires won that game for Carlton in the final five minutes,” wrote an account called Freocookster. “What a disappointing way to lose a crucial, hard fought game thanks to soft free kicks in front of goal.”

“The umpires just lost Fremantle the game,” wrote another X user Andrew Stuart. “Ball 100% touched and then give another free kick. Sorry but that’s way too much influence. Carlton I’m glad you’re doing well. But that’s not a win to celebrate.”

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