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Rule change stunner: AFL relaxes interpretation to studs-up rule

Moore boost for Pies, studs-up stir, Tex's message Nat Edwards and Mitch Cleary with all the latest news on Footy Feed

THE AFL has made a stunning interpretation change to the studs-up rule less than 24 hours after it was blasted by Richmond coach Damien Hardwick.

Tigers forward Jack Riewoldt was penalised twice for using his studs in a marking contest during Sunday's win over West Coast.

While the AFL said both decisions were correct, they have made an immediate change to the interpretation of the rule ahead of round 23. 

"The studs up rule was brought in to ensure players did not employ their studs in marking contests in a manner likely to cause injury," AFL General Manager Football Operations Steve Hocking said on Monday.

"Although the two incidents from the Richmond v West Coast Eagles match were adjudicated according to the current interpretation, the AFL acknowledges there is a need to adjust the interpretation of rough conduct free kicks relating to the use of studs in marking contests and will make this change effective immediately."

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The initial change was implemented after Greater Western Sydney forward Toby Greene repeatedly used his studs in marking contests during the 2018 finals campaign.