Death at MCG final shocks footy world

A patron has died at the MCG in a ‘distressing’ set of scenes during the blockbuster Melbourne-Carlton semi-final overnight.

AFL: Melbourne Demons coach Simon Goodwin fronted the media following their semi final defeat to the Carlton Blues.

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Caroline Wilson on 3AW revealed on Saturday afternoon that one football fan in the Shane Warne Stand died after going into cardiac arrest, while another patron who was reportedly a guest of an AFL sponsor was ejected from the premises after racially vilifying Adam Saad.

Nine’s Caroline Wilson broke the news on 3AW. Photo: Nine

“On a more sober note, there were a couple of pretty dramatic and one absolutely tragic incident at the MCG last night,” Wilson said.

“A patron in the Shane Warne Stand dining at one of the AFL functions choked and went into cardiac arrest and died.

“Details are emerging but AFL staff who were at that function are being looked after this morning.

“Very distressing incident.”

A spokesperson for Ambulance Victoria confirmed that paramedics were called to an incident in East Melbourne around 7pm on September 15.

A police spokesperson confirmed the death of a 50-year-old woman.

“Police will prepare a report for the Coroner following the death of a 50-year-old woman on Friday, 15 September,” the statement to said.

“Emergency services tried to revive the woman at a sports ground on Brunton Avenue about 6.50pm.

“She sadly died at the scene.

“The death is not being treated as suspicious.”

Wilson continued onto the second incident at the blockbuster semi-final.

“And at the official Olympic Room function that I was attending, during the game, one of the AFL’s guests, a guest of a sponsor, racially vilified Adam Saad,” she said.

“Another patron heard the comments, police were called and a man was ejected from the MCG.

“So yeah … one very, very distressing and tragic incident and another pretty concerning incident as well.”

Saad is unfortunately no stranger to racial abuse. Photo by Michael Klein.

A spokesperson for Victoria Police said a 47-year-old man from Point Cook, in Melbourne’s west, was evicted from the ground following reports of offensive behaviour.

“It is alleged the man yelled an inappropriate comment to one of the players,” the statement to said.

“Police spoke to the man before he was evicted for offensive behaviour.

“There will be no further police action.”

Victoria has a number of laws that prohibit racial abuse, specifically dealing with public behaviour under the Racial and Religious Tolerance Act 2001.

It is not the first recent incidence of Saad being racially vilified, with one fan last year labelling the 2022 All-Australian a “terrorist” during a game against Adelaide.

The dashing Lebanese-heritage defender is a devout and practising Muslim, having grown up in Melboune’s inner-north, among the heart of the city’s Muslim community.

Adam Saad and the Blues are through to their first preliminary final in 23 years. (Photo by Michael Willson/AFL Photos via Getty Images)

The fan was reportedly spoken to by security and approached for questioning by the South Australian police, but was allowed to remain inside the venue for the duration of the match.

Saad spoke out about the previous incident at the time and said that he hoped the public response would serve as a form of education to prevent such incidents happening in the future.

“We’ve just got to educate around making comments like that,” he said at the time.

“At the end of the day I know who I am as a person and us as a Muslim community. As long as we can educate the person and move things forward.

“Those things shouldn’t be said, but hopefully the club and the AFL will investigate and look after it.”

It comes after the Melbourne Cricket Club, who are responsible for management and development of the MCG on trust from the Victorian Government, adopted a new “zero tolerance” approach to racist abuse earlier this year.

“As ground manager, we are committed to upholding high standards throughout the MCG including the MCC Members’ Reserve,” MCC President Fred Oldfield told The Age earlier this year.

The AFL and Carlton Football Club have been contacted for comment.

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