COLEAMBALLY footballer Josh Hamilton is free to apply to play again early in the 2019 season.
Hamilton became the first AFL Riverina footballer to reach the national deregistration limit of 16 games suspension on Monday.
Hamilton received a three-game suspension for head butting Charles Sturt University (CSU) footballer Jordan Ackland on August 12.
It took Hamilton’s career tally of suspensions to 17 games.
Southern NSW AFL community football and facilities manager Paul Habel said Hamilton can apply to be re-registered early in 2019.
“The deregistration is for 12 months and then he can apply to be re-registered,” Habel said.
Hamilton’s deregistration commences when his current three-game suspension ends early in the 2018 season.
Under the national policy, a player is free to appeal the deregistration or apply to be re-registered after 12 months, pending an appeal hearing.
An appeal may only be brought by a player if he can demonstrate that exceptional circumstances that warrant re-registration.
He must prove he is either ‘genuinely rehabilitated or committed to ongoing rehabilitation’, is ‘unlikely to re-offend’ or ‘any other exceptional circumstances’.
A player is only allowed one appeal a year.