AFL club North Melbourne have handed Sudanese-born rookie ruckman Majak Daw an indefinite ban for being untruthful to coach Brad Scott.
Scott clarified the reasons for the suspension on Wednesday night after the club had released a statement earlier in the day which simply said the 20-year-old had breached rehabilitation protocols and failed to meet the club's cultural standards.
"The reason for making a generic statement about cultural expectations and training standards is because Majak has the highest profile of any AFL footballer never to play an AFL game," Scott told Melbourne Radio 3AW.
Daw is the only Sudanese-born player ever to win a spot on an AFL playing list.
"So we feel an obligation to protect Majak and support him through these things," Scott said.
"We're being forced to clarify that which is unfortunate.
"But the bottom line is Majak is in rehabilitation because he has an injured knee at the moment.
"He went out when he shouldn't have and when I asked him about that, he was untruthful.
"Trust is everything, not only in football clubs but everywhere.
"When that trust is breached, then you've got an issue that you've got to deal with.
"Could we have come out and said that from the start? We could have.
"But we feel an obligation to look after Majak."
Scott said he felt he'd been forced to defend Daw and clarify the issue because of rumours which swept through Melbourne football circles on Wednesday afternoon.
Daw will train with VFL affiliate Werribee Tigers until further notice.
Scott said Daw was a player with enormous potential.
North's chief of football Donald McDonald said Daw would have to satisfy the club's leadership group he was on the right track.
"He's had an enormous amount of pressure put on him and some high expectations within the community," McDonald said.
"He's a North Melbourne boy and we'll support him 100 per cent."
Kangaroos chief executive Eugene Arocca said Daw would learn his lesson and emerge a better person.
But Arocca had told a lunchtime press conference that it would be unfair to Daw if the club went into further detail regarding the reasons for the ban.
Daw arrived in Australia from Sudan in 2003.
He says he was deeply hurt by the racial taunts of a spectator during a VFL match in June 2011 when Daw was playing for Werribee against Port Melbourne at Port's TEAC Oval.
The fan was evicted from the ground.
Daw's suspension overshadowed North's "Box On" announcement which was designed to promote their debt-reduction campaign.
Club great Glenn Archer, who retired in 2007, went two rounds with IBF middleweight world champion Daniel Geale at Kensington Boxing Gym.
Arocca said the club had already wiped $500,000 from a $5 million debt.