UPDATE: A tribunal hearing for a Pimpinio under-17 player accused of assaulting a Swifts player has been postponed.
The footballer was scheduled to face the Western Vic Football tribunal on Wednesday night after an incident on Saturday that left a Swifts player with severe facial injuries.
Field umpires reported the Horsham District Football Netball League player, who is being investigated for assault by Stawell police.
The player was immediately removed from the game and suspended by Pimpinio.
The Swifts player received fractures to his eye socket and cheek bone and will require surgery.
Western Vic Football general manager Stephen McQueen said a new date for the tribunal would most likely be next week.
He said the matter would be heard by the tribunal without the need for a league investigation because the incident had been witnessed by umpires, and the player was reported.
Northern Grampians Police Inspector Ian Lindsay said police were investigating the incident as an assault.
“It’s a nasty incident and you wouldn’t expect something like that in that age group,” he said.
“We want to send the message that violence in any form is unacceptable.”
Inspector Lindsay said police were in contact with Pimpinio president David O’Connor and Swifts president Robert Carey.
With the two clubs slated to meet in Saturday’s under-14 qualifying final at Balmoral, Inspector Lindsay said restraint from supporters was important.
“We want to encourage appropriate behaviour from teams and supporters – no violence and no reprisals,” he said.
Mr O’Connor released a club statement about the incident on Tuesday.
“The club is devastated over the incident,” he said.
“Any behaviour outside the realms of sportsmanship and healthy competition cannot and will not be tolerated by our club.”