Sport

GV legend Perry Meka hospitalised after alleged assault after game

By Aydin Payne

One of the region’s most decorated footballers was taken to hospital at the weekend, following an incident at the end of a football match in Melbourne’s western suburbs.

Perry Meka was involved in a confrontation between opposition supporters following a Western Region Football League match between Hoppers Crossing and St Albans.

Meka, who has kicked 100 goals in a season 15 times, had been coaching St Albans in the WRFL Division One match before the incident took place.

The Herald Sun has posted footage from the altercation, which shows opposition supporters and Meka engage in a verbal exchange.

Victoria Police confirmed detectives from the Wyndham Crime Investigation unit were investigating an alleged assault in Hoppers Crossing on July 6, about 5.30pm.

Police investigators have been told Meka, 53, was struck to the head following a football match at Hogans Rd Reserve and was taken to hospital with serious injuries.

The investigation remains ongoing.

St Albans were defeated by Hoppers Crossing in the round 11 contest, 15.11 (101) to 11.12 (78).

Both clubs were contacted for comment with St Albans saying it didn’t want to comment while the incident was being investigated.

‘‘As the WRFL is still investigating, as well as the CIU, we are, at this stage unable to provide any further comment in relation to the incident involving Perry,’’ St Albans’ Laura Kretiuk said.

The WRFL issued a statement on its website yesterday morning, confirming the altercation took place following the match.

‘‘The WRFL can confirm an alleged incident took place 45 minutes to an hour after Saturday’s senior match between Hoppers Crossing and St Albans,’’ the statement read.

‘‘The WRFL is investigating further, as are the two clubs.’’

The statement went on to say the league condemns violence that undermines, ‘‘the tireless work clubs and the league undertake to establish a safe, welcoming and family-friendly environment’’.

Meka is in his first season coaching St Albans, which follows stints coaching in Queensland and across the Goulburn Valley.

He is widely known for coaching the Shepparton Swans (formerly Lemnos), Numurkah, Tongala and Ardmona — where he was a premiership coach in 2002.