COLLINGWOOD'S Jack Ginnivan should have received a free kick for a high tackle by Essendon's Mason Redman in Sunday's thriller at the MCG, the AFL has conceded. 

The Magpies forward was caught high by Redman during the first quarter of Sunday's incredible win over Essendon but did not receive a whistle in his favour.

It came just days after the League moved to clarify its high contact rule, following fierce debate around whether Ginnivan was being umpired differently to other players.

The League had said players would not be given free kicks when they ducked or shrugged in tackles to create high contact.

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No free kick for Ginnivan despite high contact

Collingwood's Jack Ginnivan is tackled around the neck by Essendon's Mason Redman but doesn't receive a free kick

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Ginnivan was cited as one of three examples in the League's memo and has been an unwitting lightning rod this season for criticism of players who attempt to draw free kicks.

In a statement released by the AFL on Monday evening, the League deemed that Ginnivan had been responsible for the initial high contact but Redman followed through with the tackle "in an unreasonable manner, holding Ginnivan around the neck. In this instance a free kick should have been awarded to Ginnivan."

The AFL said the umpires had done "a terrific job" with the high-tackle interpretations across all games in round 19, following the mid-week clarification. 

Mason Redman and Jack Ginnivan tussle during Essendon's clash against Collingwood in round 19, 2022. Picture: AFL Photos

"There are instances where, at full speed, in real time and at ground level, some decisions are extremely challenging to make, and this one is an example of that," the League said. 

Richmond legend Matthew Richardson said the Ginnivan-Redman non-call was "outrageous", while former Magpies hero Mick McGuane said whistleblowers should "umpire the rules of the game, not the player".

Collingwood ruck-forward Mason Cox also weighed in, questioning the league's commitment to player welfare around head contact.

Coach Craig McRae offered Ginnivan his support post-match.

"I thought that was a free kick. He just tackled him high," McRae said.

"I don't think there was any leaning into it.

"I'm clear with it (the rule). The umpires have come to our training.

"We won't make blame, or excuses around things. Umpires get some right, some wrong."

Full AFL statement

"In this passage of play, Collingwood’s Ginnivan is responsible for the initial high contact however Essendon’s Redman then continues with the tackle in an unreasonable manner, holding Ginnivan around the neck. In this instance a free kick should have been awarded to Ginnivan.

Overall, the umpires did a terrific job of officiating the high tackle interpretation in all games over the weekend. There are instances where, at full speed, in real time and at ground level, some decisions are extremely challenging to make, and this one is an example of that."