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ADELAIDE admits it doesn't know what it would do in a Grand Final if it was down to 17 fit players and a player with suspected concussion wanted to go back onto the ground.
Crows football operations manager Phil Harper told SEN radio on Monday morning Adelaide's coaching staff had briefly considered that very dilemma during Saturday night's Showdown when forward Kurt Tippett wanted to return to the field against the club doctor's advice.
Tippett suffered a heavy head knock in a collision with Port defender Tom Logan early in Saturday night's game and was taken from the ground. Shaun McKernan had already been substituted with a broken jaw.
Harper said Crows coach Brenton Sanderson had been adamant the club had to follow its doctor's advice that Tippett was not fit to return despite the key forward's subsequent desire to resume.
"By half-time Kurt was feeling a bit better and wanted to go back out and play and the doctors were saying no," Harper said.
"We were saying, 'He wants to come back on, what do we do?' And the coach was quite adamant 'No, no, the doctor says he doesn't come on'."
But Harper admitted a similar call might not be so clear-cut in a Grand Final.
"We had a good philosophical discussion in the box as to well, what if it was a Grand Final and we're down to 17 guys and he wants to go on, what do we do?" Harper said.
"It's an interesting one and I don't know what the answer is. Do you get fined if you do that or does the club become liable if he gets injured again or something? I'm not sure. We'll ask that question this week.
"The player's health comes first but I think all of us older guys who've been around awhile know that we have gone on and even if it's standing in a forward pocket for five minutes so we can get [Sam] Jacobs to have a bit of a rest you might do it."
Harper said he had...