The AFL has given a lifetime ban to a man who ran onto Adelaide Oval and disrupted a game.

The 22-year-old from northern Adelaide invaded the ground during Adelaide’s AFL match against Geelong on March 22.

Appearing to be recording the episode on his mobile phone, he not only entered the arena but ran straight into the action as players scrambled for a contested ball.

After an umpire stopped play, the man was grabbed by Crows midfielder Matt Crouch before breaking free, only to be collared by Adelaide’s Ben Keays before security pounced.

The AFL on Wednesday said the man has been banned for life from attending AFL and AFLW matches at any venue.

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“Running onto the ground during a match is not only senseless but it is unsafe and unlawful,” the AFL’s general counsel Stephen Meade said.

“If you choose to do it, then you will not only be given a significant fine but you will have deal with local authorities and ultimately lose the privilege of attending AFL matches.”

The man was arrested on the night and bailed to appear in Adelaide Magistrates Court on June 19.

He faces a maximum fine of $5,000 for breaching South Australia’s Recreation Grounds Regulations.

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The AFL said the man, who was not a club or AFL member, could apply to have his ban reviewed after a five-year period.

Coaches of Adelaide and Geelong blasted the “dangerous” pitch invader, with the Cats’ Chris Scott referencing the infamous 1982 incident when Australian Test cricketer Terry Alderman dislocated a shoulder when tackling a pitch invader in Perth.

Scott’s Adelaide counterpart, Matthew Nicks, spoke of the danger to the two Crows players, Crouch and Keays, who grabbed the invader.

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The incident was one of several pitch invasions this season, with two spectators running onto the MCG during Geelong’s victory over Hawthorn on Easter Monday.

While the incident in Adelaide was during play, both fans during the Hawthorn match ran onto the field while play was suspended due to a lightning warning.

Security guards were eventually spread out across the ground as the teams waited in the rooms for the danger to pass.


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