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Gold Coast backflips on playing ban against released youngster

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - AUGUST 20: Jarrod Garlett of the Suns marks the ball during the 2016 AFL Round 22 match between the Collingwood Magpies and the Gold Coast Suns at Etihad Stadium on August 20, 2016 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Michael Willson/AFL Media)
Suns youngster Jarrod Garlett

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GOLD Coast has backflipped on its original restriction to stop Jarrod Garlett playing in the AFL for two years.

Garlett, who signed a two-year extension in August, has been released from his contract to return home to Western Australia to deal with a private family matter.

Despite his release, the Suns said the 20-year-old would not be able to play in the AFL for two years (the duration of his contract).

But late on Tuesday night the club amended its original statement to say there was no restriction should he decide to play on.

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Suns football manager Marcus Ashcroft told goldcoastfc.com.au a major change with his family led to Garlett deciding he no longer wanted to be with the Suns.

"Our player development team and wider support network has been working with Jarrod for some time to assist him in adjusting into life away from his family," Ashcroft said.



"In the midst of this, a significant change in circumstances with his family back in Western Australia led to Jarrod making the decision it was in his, and his family’s, best interests to be released from his contract.



"We continue to work with Jarrod and his management to ensure Jarrod's transition into life away from the AFL is as smooth as possible and we wish him and his family all the very best in the future."

Garlett was allowed a trip home during the year to deal with family issues, and said at the time that helped him find his best form.

He played 17 games in the first two years of his career since being drafted with pick 15 in the 2014 NAB AFL Draft.