MELBOURNE forward Alex Neal-Bullen has been rubbed out for four games, with the AFL Tribunal coming down hard on a sling tackle that concussed Adelaide youngster Will Hamill on Wednesday night.

Neal-Bullen pinned one of Hamill's arms while slinging him into the turf, with the first-year Crows player groggily coming from the field where he was unable to return to the game after suffering a concussion.


The incident was referred directly to the AFL Tribunal by the Match Review Officer, who deemed the impact of the tackle as 'severe' in a grading that normally determines a minimum penalty of a three-match ban.

Melbourne attempted to downgrade the impact to 'high', which would have carried a two-match suspension, but the club was unsuccessful.

Adelaide's Will Hamill is helped from the ground after he was concussed in a tackle by Melbourne's Alex Neal-Bullen. Picture: Getty Images/AFL Photos

Neal-Bullen, who was remorseful after the match, will now miss Melbourne's upcoming games against North Melbourne, Collingwood and the Western Bulldogs - as well as one more.

ROUNDS 11-13 Check out the full fixture

The incident was the first serious test case of the Match Review's revamped interpretations on dangerous tackles, with the wording constituting a dangerous tackle changing from "arms" being pinned to "arm" being pinned.

The League was forced to change the wording back in June after Hawthorn veteran Shaun Burgoyne escaped with a fine for a dangerous tackle on Geelong superstar Patrick Dangerfield.

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