Lachie Whitfield Opens Up On The Impact Of His Six-Month Ban

"The first thing I thought..."

Lachie Whitfield Opens Up On The Impact Of His Six-Month Ban

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GWS midfielder Lachie Whitfield has spoken about his six-month ban for the first time since the scandal, taking full responsibility for his involvement.

He took the blame for evading a drug test, which saw him suspended for six months, GWS administrators Graeme Allan and Craig Lambert each suspended for a year and GWS slapped with a $100,000 fine and 1000 bidding points in the draft.

"At the end of the day I control what I do," he told News Corp.

"I’m the one who got a six-month ban, I take responsibility. I know 'Gubby' and 'Lambo' have been in strife for what they did but I don’t blame them. They are very good people in the AFL community. They put the players first and that’s why so many have re-signed and I can’t speak highly enough of them."

Whitfield revealed the scandal had played on his mind for 18 months, with the story breaking a "weight off his chest". 

"It wasn’t a bad thing that it came out. The incident happened 18 months before it became public," he said.

"I played with it for a long time and it did affect my footy. There were two months when I really struggled to get a kick and when it came out there was nothing to hide and I was able to play with freedom and aggression."

He said he's been copping a little bit of stick for it.

"The weekend (against Carlton) was the first time I noticed a bit of abuse from the stands," Whitfield said.

"There was none in Perth or Sydney, it made me smile and gave me a giggle. There have been a dozen players who have given me a pat on the back and said it’s good to see me back.

"There was one player who had a dig at me and I’m not going to name the player or the club...I gave a bit of lip back and we won the game.

"In the AFL community a lot of the boys know what I went through and know the circumstances and they have had my back in terms of comments being said. There has been a lot of negative stuff but from other teams and players I’ve only had support."