Crows fined $50k over mask failures

adelaide crows

All Adelaide players and staffers are wearing the blame and shame of a $50,000 fine from the AFL for breaching coronavirus protocols.

But Crows coach Matthew Nicks says the costly blunder doesn't evidence a flawed culture at the club.

"It doesn't come back to people having poor character or our culture being poor," Nicks told reporters.

"It's an error that we have made and we have to be better than that."

Five Crows players and three staffers were found to have not worn face masks correctly on a post-game commercial flight last Sunday.

The AFL's general counsel Andrew Dillon said "there is simply no excuse" for the breach of airline protocols.

Dillon said the $50,000 fine would be included in Adelaide's football department soft salary cap this year.

Nicks said the eight trangressors wouldn't be made to pay the fine.

"One in, all in - we made the mistake as a team, as an organisation, so we will cop that," he said.

The AFL announced the sanction about five hours before Adelaide's five-point loss to Collingwood.

Nicks, who denied the furore was a factor in the loss, said he was unaware of the breaches during a Virgin Airlines flight from Sydney to Adelaide last Sunday.

"We need to be better at helping each other and looking after each other and saying 'hey, put your mask back on'," Nicks said.

"Unfortunately we didn't get that right on this particular flight."

Earlier Saturday, the Crows' head of football Adam Kelly said the entire club took the blame.

"Whilst there is some individuals involved, it was really the collective who were at fault," Kelly told reporters.

"Whether you were one of those people who weren't wearing a mask correctly or whether you're a teammate or a fellow staff member and you haven't brought those people to account in that moment, we all wear the blame.

"I don't think our players believe they are above the rules. What they were was complacent."

The AFL investigated after a tip-off from a member of the public on the flight.

"Any time you have anyone in the community reflect on the behaviours of your people in a negative way, it certainly makes your stomach turn," Kelly said.

"We're apologetic to the people who were on the plane that the behaviours of some of our staff and players have made people ... uncomfortable.

"(And) apologetic to the AFL, who must be incredibly frustrated at a time when they are working so hard with governments to continue the season through the pandemic.

"And then to our members who are no doubt disappointed in this, it's significant financial impact on the club as well."

Meanwhile, the AFL has brought forward a round 14 fixture between West Coast and Richmond to round 13.

The match at Perth's Optus Stadium had been scheduled for June 17 but will now be played on June 13.

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