WA Today - Business News, World News & Breaking News in Australia


Mediation to settle score between blueing clubs

Robert Warnock is on the move.

Robert Warnock is on the move, however the destination is uncertain. Photo: Paul Harris

Carlton has said it will unwillingly enter mediation in a bid to break the stalemate over the contentious trade of young Fremantle ruckman Robbie Warnock.

As trade week enters its third day, the Dockers and the Blues are no nearer meeting each other in the middle over the trade of the 21-year-old, who wants to join Chris Judd and co at Princes Park but could be forced into the lottery of the national or pre-season drafts.

That is because Fremantle is sticking to its demand of Carlton's first draft pick - six overall - while the Blues are adamant its second pick (24) is sufficient.

The Blues could throw in one of its WA youngsters to sweeten the deal, with either Luke Blackwell or Paul Bower the likely bait.

The dispute could lead to the unprecedented step of the AFL appointing one of its lawyers to assist the two clubs in a mediation meeting on Thursday to settle the trade.

Carlton football operations general manager Steven Icke said that while mediation was not desirable, it was an option.

"We would prefer to come to a deal without that having to happen, but that is what needs to happen then we are happy to go down that path," Icke said.

"We think pick 24 is a very good pick in what is a very good draft.

"This draft has got plenty of depth and plenty of quality.

"Pick 24 is probably commensurate with a much earlier pick than in previous drafts, so we think our second round pick for a guy that is 21 years of age and has played 21 AFL games is more than fair and reasonable.

"If I was in their shoes I would be asking for our first pick as well, but I think that is a bit over zealous.

"You can see with (Sydney's) Ryan O'Keefe, clubs are reluctant to give up their first round pick, and he is a premiership player and an All-Australian.

"On that basis we think 24 is fair and reasonable and we hope at some point in the next 24 hours Fremantle see that pick 24 is a very good deal."

AFL bosses are said to have become frustrated with clubs in recent years for waiting until the last hour of trade week to finalise deals. Continued...

More Related Coverage

Farmer denied a fairytale finish

8:15am | Retired Fremantle controversy machine Jeff Farmer will not get a fairytale farewell to Subiaco Oval, after being left out of Australia’s international rules squad to take on Ireland in a two-test series later this month.