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Docker Pearce racially abused by AFL fan

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Fremantle veteran Danyle Pearce has decided against taking action against a man who racially abused him during Sunday’s 104-point AFL loss to Richmond in Perth.

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The fan was a guest in a corporate box when he racially abused Pearce, who was an emergency for the match and was running on the playing surface after the game had finished.

The man contacted the club on Monday offering to personally apologise to Pearce, who has played 101 games for the Dockers after crossing from Port Adelaide.

Pearce has reportedly declined that offer.

Fremantle club officials will meet with the man to discuss the matter further.

It’s unclear what punishment – if any – the club will impose on the fan.

“The incident on Sunday was not the first time I have experienced racism in my playing career,” Pearce said.

“It is unfortunate to think that racist attitudes still exist in this day and age.

“I try to put experiences like this behind me and realise it demonstrates a lack of understanding and education on behalf of the person.”

AFL Players’ Association CEO Paul Marsh weighed in this morning, saying it was “incredibly frustrating that players continue to be subjected to racism”.

“Situations like what occurred on the weekend are simply unacceptable, and the industry, players, and fans all need to continue to work together to eradicate racism from our game,” he said in a statement.

“We urge footy fans to call out poor behaviour at AFL venues so incidents like these serve as way to build awareness and educate society about the hurt that racism causes the player, their family and their community.”

-AAP

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