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Cameron's return to form overshadowed by suspect sling tackle in Lions' win

Andrew Mathieson -

Brisbane star forward Charlie Cameron is expected to come under scrutiny on Friday following a sling tackle less than 24 hours earlier applied to Melbourne defender Jake Lever during the Lions' 22-point away win at the MCG.

The incident occurred late in the opening quarter on Thursday night after Lever was initially confronted by Lions opponent Dayne Zorko from the front before his brief hesitation with the ball allowed Cameron to apply a tackle from behind.

But Cameron twisted Lever across his right shoulder and slung his one-time Adelaide teammate's head into the turf.

The premiership centre-half back continued to play on for the rest of match, showing no to little adverse effects to his head.

However, the Lardil and Waanyi man is a chance to still come under fire from match review officer Michael Christian towards facing a dangerous tackle charge, especially since the AFL has begun to crack down even further on physical impact to the head this year.

The AFL has become more conscious of protection of the head and long-term trauma, as awareness continues to grow of the impact along with the potential of future legal action against the game's administrators.

The ruling on similar tackles in the wake of Melbourne midfielder Angus Brayshaw's medical retirement earlier this year from head trauma over the years has been applied more strictly now than ever before.

That extends to players who have been deemed by a club doctor have suffered a concussion to sit out of football for at least 21 days under stark, new protocols.

Lions coach Fagan did not have to address Cameron's tackle in the post-match press conference, but the 63-year-old AFL stalwart did admit to loving his side's pressure and physical presence from up in the coaches box.

"I have never seen us tackle so well," he said.

"They dropped away a bit in the last quarter when we got tired, but the tackling in the first three quarters was just awesome."

Fagan had explained to the media at the Brisbane Airport before flying out for the key clash earlier in the day that he believed that Cameron was set to break free that night after a slow start to his season.

Cameron's own head clash with Trent Cotchin last June had cost the goalsneak a chunk out of his preseason following ongoing teeth surgery and the complications that followed.

Cameron's run in with the umpire, who immediately penalised against the tackle, may have also fired up the club's multiple leading goalkicker.

He finished the cool evening with a game-high three goals in Brisbane's 12.10 (82) to 8.12 (60) victory in front of 43,098 spectators.


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