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Magpie players lie about drink driving -

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ELEANOR HALL: One of the AFL's most influential football clubs is under pressure to sack two of its
star players, over revelations that they lied about a drink driving incident in Melbourne on Sunday
night. The incident has humiliated not only the two Collingwood players, but their club and it's
President, Eddie McGuire.

At a press conference yesterday, defender Heath Shaw repeatedly denied that his team mate Alan
Didak was with him at the time of the accident. But it's emerged that the trouble-prone Didak was
with Shaw and the attempted cover-up has embarrassed the club President who backed the original
story.

In Melbourne Alison Caldwell reports.

ALISON CALDWELL: It won't be the first time someone's been undone not by the actual incident, but
by the cover-up that's followed. Today possibly the richest and certainly the most influential
football club in the country is under pressure to suspend, if not sack, two of its star players.

Collingwood's trouble-prone Alan Didak and defender Heath Shaw both repeatedly lied to their club
and to the public, over a drink driving accident on Sunday night. Former Collingwood captain Nathan
Buckley says the club should sack the two players.

NATHAN BUCKLEY: I'd be suspending him indefinitely if it was me and I'd do the same with Heath Shaw
at this stage. There needs to be a strong stance made by the club to set the tone. Not just for
Alan Didak and for Heath Shaw but for every other young player at the football club.

ALISON CALDWELL: He says the events of the past two days strike at the principles of honesty and
integrity that Collingwood is built on.

NATHAN BUCKLEY: For those players to be out from a football perspective, six days before a game
when they've had an eight day break is just unacceptable and then to top it off by being dishonest
to the people in an environment where you rely on honesty and you rely on trust is unforgivable.

ALISON CALDWELL: 22-year-old Heath Shaw was nearly three times over the legal limit when he crashed
his car into parked cars in Melbourne's inner east on Sunday night. The club thought it knew
everything about the incident when it held a press conference yesterday, forcing Shaw to front the
media, flanked by his captain and surrounded by his leadership group.

One of the first things Shaw was asked was whether forward Alan Didak was in the car with him.

HEATH SHAW: I was with a mate.

REPORTER: Who was that mate?

HEATH SHAW: I don't really want to name his name. He doesn't... he's not really, he didn't need to
be dragged through this. It's my problem.

REPORTER: There are strong suggestions it's Alan Didak.

HEATH SHAW: That's untrue.

ALISON CALDWELL: Alan Didak's future with the club has been on shaky ground since June last year
when he delayed admitting to being drunk and in a car with Hell's Angel Christopher Hudson when the
bikie fired shots into the air near police.

Less than a week later, Hudson shot dead solicitor Brendan Keilar and severely injured two others
in the Melbourne CBD shootings. Collingwood warned Didak one more transgression and he'd be sacked.
At yesterday's press conference, Heath Shaw concocted a story when he was repeatedly pressed about
where Didak was at the time of Sunday night's accident.

HEATH SHAW: No he wasn't near there. But a short time after he was because we were together and
then we went separate ways and I called him straight away because I was, obviously didn't know what
to do.

ALISON CALDWELL: Collingwood president and media personality Eddie McGuire scoffed at the
suggestion that Didak was in the car with Shaw.

EDDIE MCGUIRE: No, no, no. I mean, Didak will be accused for the Kennedy shooting next.

ALISON CALDWELL: An angry Eddie McGuire conceded he may have been too lenient on Collingwood
players in the past. Here's how he described the unidentified friend who was with Shaw at the time.

EDDIE MCGUIRE: A so-called friend who let his mate, who was a high profile AFL footballer get into
a car drunk. You know, there comes a time in your life when you've got to get rid of scaly mates
let me tell you.

ALISON CALDWELL: Alan Didak recently signed a new contract with Collingwood but it's understood the
club removed the strict behavioural clauses which were imposed after last year's incident.

Last night the Club conceded Didak was a passenger in the car with Shaw on Sunday night and said
the sanctions imposed on Shaw would be reviewed. Speaking to ABC Local Radio this morning
Collingwood CEO Gary Pert said the club was built on trust.

GARY PERT: Every player that at any stage during their career becomes out of alignment with player
code makes themselves acceptable to, susceptible to be judged as someone that maybe isn't
appropriate to be part of a club like Collingwood.

ALISON CALDWELL: But the AFL Players' Association says there are no grounds for Collingwood to sack
Didak. Chief executive Brendan Gale has told Fairfax radio, Didak's Collingwood career shouldn't be
cut short by the incident.

BRENDAN GALE: I mean in most employment contracts there is a clause that says an employee can be
dismissed for serious or wilful misconduct, now if misrepresenting the truth or lying or fibbing
was grounds for serious or wilful misconduct, well I'd suggest we're all a bit nervous.

ELEANOR HALL: That's Brendan Gale from the AFL players association ending that report by Alison
Caldwell.