Jimmy Webster looks dejected after St Kilda's loss to Brisbane in round 15, 2023. Picture: AFL Photos

ST KILDA defender Jimmy Webster is facing a lengthy ban after being sent straight to the Tribunal for his bump on Jy Simpkin.

Webster leapt off the ground and bumped Simpkin in the head during the Saints' AAMI Community Series clash against North Melbourne on Sunday.

The Match Review Officer (MRO) graded the incident as careless conduct, severe impact and high contact, leaving Webster facing a ban of three-plus matches.

Speaking to AFL.com.au's Damian Barrett in an exclusive interview on Monday, Saints coach Ross Lyon conceded Webster would "pay a price" for the "unacceptable" hit.

"There is real concern for Jy, and in the current environment coming a week after Sam Powell-Pepper (who received a four-match ban for a hit on Mark Keane), we understand it is going to be a significant ban and as a coach you don't want to lose one of your really good players, but you've got to pay a price and he understands that," he said.

"The bottom line is it was an unacceptable action on a footy field."


Meanwhile, North Melbourne's Tristan Xerri and Bailey Scott and St Kilda's Liam Henry and Rowan Marshall have been slapped with fines after players remonstrated following the ugly incident.

Simpkin, who was concussed twice last season, was attended to by medical staff before eventually walking off the field and being ruled out for the rest of the match.

In a statement released on Monday afternoon, Saints executive general manager of football David Misson said the club would accept the Tribunal's findings.

"As a football club we are committed to doing everything possible to minimise risk and harm to players, particularly when it comes to the head. Our thoughts are with Jy Simpkin and his family, and we hope to see him return to play soon," he said.

"While it was out of character for Jimmy – who has proven to be a fair and honest player throughout his 10-plus year career – that does not excuse the action, which has no place in our game. Our focus now is to support Jimmy through the process, and we will respectfully accept the outcome of the Tribunal."


Webster said he understood his bump had fallen short of the expected standards.

"I deeply regret my actions in yesterday's game. I've reached out to Jy and cannot understate my remorse. My thoughts are with Jy and his family, and I hope he has a speedy and successful recovery," he said.

"I fully recognise the importance of protecting players' heads and in this instance, I failed to meet that much-needed standard. I will present to the Tribunal and understand there will be consequences for my actions."

North coach Alastair Clarkson apologised on Monday for making "inappropriate" comments towards Saints players in the wake of the bump.

St Kilda begins its 2024 season against Geelong on March 16, before clashes against Collingwood, Essendon and Richmond.