A furious Luke Beveridge sensationally storms out of his press conference following the Bulldogs' defeat to Melbourne, specifically after being questioned about Lachie Hunter's place in the Western Bulldogs side.
Fox Footy reporter Tom Morris revealed on Monday that Hunter would be dropped due to poor performance for the season-opener. The midfielder was then selected in the Dogs' side, was a late omission 60 minutes before the bounce, then returned to the team when Jason Johannisen was injured in the warm-up.
"You've been preying on us. You've been opening us up, causing turmoil within our football club by declaring our team well before it needs to be declared. Is that the way Fox want you to operate? Is that what you're doing? Is that the gutter journalist you want to be? Is that who you want to be?" Beveridge asked Morris during the press conference.
Lachie Hunter will front the court later this year after being hit with four charges by Victoria Police following an alleged drunken car crash in April.
The 25-year-old was suspended for four matches and fined $20,000 ($15,000 suspended) after hitting four parked cars while more than two-times the legal blood alcohol limit.
Following his actions, Hunter has opted to raise money for the Alfred Hospital road accident trauma program by completing 'Dry July' and not drinking alcohol for the next month. He will join teammates Tom Liberatore, Aaron Naughton, Caleb Daniel, Billy Gowers and Callum Porter, with a GoFundMe page set-up to collect funds.
"Given recent circumstances me and a few mates have decided to put our own spin on it," Hunter said on the fundraising page.
Western Bulldogs skipper Marcus Bontempelli says it will take time for Lachie Hunter to win back the trust of his teammates after the former vice-captain's recent involvement in a drunken car crash.
"You can tell from his statements yesterday and obvious choice to stand down from the vice-captaincy position that he understands the magnitude of his actions. It's not something you can easily atone for," Bontempelli said.
"I'll say that it's going to be something that over time he has to work through. That's what I'll probably be guiding him on."
Lachie Hunter is suspended for four AFL matches, fined $5000, and has relinquished his vice-captaincy position at the Bulldogs for his involvement in an alleged drink-driving incident.
Hunter has also copped $15,000 worth of suspended fines, while he will undertake mandatory alcohol education and counselling and community service as a result of his indiscretions.
"I'm here to take full responsibility for what I did and the damages that I caused," Hunter said.
"I let down a lot of people ... After the incident, clearly I had a bit of time to reflect. I decided it was best that I stepped down from the vice-captain role this year and the leadership group. It clearly just wasn't fair on my teammates and would have put them in uncomfortable positions going forward.
"I've obviously lost the respect of a lot of people over this time and there's not a lot I can do about that right now. I can't control what I did, but I can control what I do from here. I'll accept the sanctions given to me by the club today."
Lachie Hunter's driver's licence has been suspended, and the Bulldogs vice-captain is set to be charged for having allegedly hit four parked cars while driving under the influence of alcohol.
Hunter was driven by teammate Bailey Smith from the scene of the incident to fellow teammate Billy Gowers' house where he was later found by police. A breath test conducted on Hunter then recorded a reading of more than two times the legal blood alcohol limit.
Hunter's car, along with two of the four cars he is alleged to have hit, was towed from the scene.
Mark Hunter played 130 games in nine years for the Dogs between 1988 and 1996, but never won the medallion son Lachie Hunter now wears.
"They all want to hold the medal," Lachie said of his family.
"He never got to achieve it as a player, but he's just rapt now.
"They didn't get to be here like this, but I think it means the same to them as it does to us and its just awesome to win one because of the family ties and because it's the club I grew up supporting."
Lachie Hunter is reported to have been taken to hospital on Friday night with concussion-like symptoms after the 'clothesline' tackle from North Melbourne forward Lindsay Thomas.
The Western Bulldogs midfielder played out the game after the final-term tackle but is understood to have been taken to hospital after the Dogs' defeat by his father, former Bulldog Mark Hunter, in consultation with club doctors, to have the symptoms checked.
"He was cleared to go home, but in consultation with the club doctors he went into hospital for further observation which he came through well, he was released a couple of hours later," Bulldogs football manager Graham Lowe said.
"He presented to the club well the next day (Saturday) and also today, and we’ll put him through the appropriate battery of tests to confirm that he is fit and available to be selected this week."
The Western Bulldogs are critical of Lindsay Thomas' high hit on Lachie Hunter, with Marcus Bontempelli labelling the Roo's action malicious.
Hunter had just taken possession of the ball in the Bulldogs' backline during the fourth quarter of North's 16-point win at Etihad Stadium on Friday night, when Thomas rushed in to tackle him and caught him around the neck with his left arm.
"We didn't really like it at all, we thought there was quite a bit of malice in it," Bontempelli said.
"He will be OK, hopefully he can relax and be OK over the next couple of days. But we thought it was quite a bit unfair."
Hunter has been cleared of wrongdoing after a bet was placed from his account on the Western Bulldogs' NAB Challenge clash with Melbourne on March 14.
Hunter, who wasn't playing in the match, immediately raised the alarm with Bulldogs officials at half-time when he was informed that a Footscray VFL player had placed what is believed to have been a $10 multi-bet from his account.
The AFL integrity unit's investigation into the matter has subsequently cleared the 20-year-old of breaching League rules.
Hunter fully co-operated with the investigation and has escaped penalty or sanction from the AFL.
Western Bulldogs president Peter Gordon has urged people not to jump to conclusions about the Lachie Hunter betting drama, and believes both players involved could be cleared of wrongdoing by the AFL's investigation.
Gordon was backed by League CEO Gillon McLachlan, who said on Friday the AFL's investigation had so far uncovered "nothing more systemic or broader" than a "one-off transaction".
"It involves an isolated one-off transaction that had a couple of legs to it … on the information we have, nothing more systemic or broader than that," McLachlan said.
"It was actually self-reported to the integrity department before the game had even finished."
Lachie Hunter is in the midst of an investigation for his involvement in a bet placed on the AFL.
It is believed Hunter met with AFL integrity department officials on Thursday to explain his role in a bet placed on Saturday's NAB Challenge match between the Western Bulldogs and Melbourne.
The 20-year-old informed Bulldogs officials of the incident at half-time on Saturday, immediately after becoming aware a bet had been placed on the match, from his betting account, by a Footscray VFL player.
The club's head of football Graham Lowe then informed AFL integrity officer Brett Clothier.
The bet is believed to be a $10 multi-legged bet which also included soccer matches.