Leitchville-Gunbower premiership star Jack Gleeson will be de-registered after he was handed a three-week suspension on Wednesday night.
The 25-year-old was found guilty by the HDFNL tribunal of unbecoming conduct in that he struck North Bendigo's Manny Thalasinos in the second semi-final clash between the Bombers and Bulldogs on August 25.
The three-week suspension put Gleeson over the 16-week threshold and he won't be eligible to play football anywhere in Australia.
Gleeson will be able to reapply for registration in 12 months time.
Leitchville-Gunbower also has the ability to appeal the three-week suspension. The club has until Friday afternoon to lodge an appeal.
The incident between Gleeson and Thalasinos was not seen by the three central umpires on the day.
The Bulldogs called for an investigation and after interviewing the players involved, witnesses and umpires, AFL Victoria Country investigation officer Peter Beriman deemed Gleeson had a case to answer.
Video of the incident showed Gleeson strike Thalasinos with a swinging left-arm to the head 30-40m off the ball.
Thalasinos, who was tagging Gleeson that day, told the tribunal that it was the "hardest hit" he'd received in his footy career.
The 18-year-old didn't fall to the ground and played out the rest of the game, but he said he was “dazed and confused” and had suffered headaches after the match.
Gleeson said he hadn't struck Thalasinos with a clenched fist and that he'd tried to "push him off".
Gleeson's advocate Iain Findlay said the action was a high tackle that warranted a free kick, but not a report.
Beriman told the tribunal that the action was "unneccessary and avoidable".
"No matter how much you sugar coat it, a strike is a strike,'' Beriman said.
The tribunal agreed. Chairman John Chapman handed down the guilty finding and the three-match suspension.
Gleeson, who won Leitchville-Gunbower’s best and fairest this year, has returned to live in his native Tasmania.