Man holding baby allegedly punches smaller man to the ground at junior netball game

Onlookers attend to the man on the ground.
Onlookers attend to the man on the ground. Photo: Supplied

A man holding a baby allegedly felled a smaller man after an argument turned violent at a junior netball game at the weekend. 

The man holding the baby is alleged to have punched the other man to the ground where he lay for 10 minutes.

Police were called to the Equex Exhibition Centre in Wagga Wagga shortly after noon on Saturday.  

Police inspector Adrian Telfer said paramedics treated the victim at the scene and both men were arrested.

By Monday, charges had not been laid. 

A witness - who wished to remain anonymous - claimed the "much bigger" man holding the baby initially spat in the other man's face. 

The smaller man allegedly lashed out in response.

The bigger man was heard to say: "I'm holding a baby. Stop."

As the smaller man walked away, the bigger man reportedly said: "This isn't over." 


The bigger man then allegedly punched the smaller man to the ground, where he lay "for quite some time", the witness said.

"People rushed in, including children.

"Onlookers looked to comfort and care for the punched man, while police were called." 

The bigger man was heard saying: "This is all over one thing I posted on Facebook."

The witness said it was "pretty disturbing" for children - including a group of 14-year-old girls - to see. 

He said the punched man was able to get up and walk to the ambulance after more than 10 minutes. 

"It was bizarre to watch," he said. 

"There's this guy holding a baby, punching this other guy to the ground." 

Inspector Rob Vergano said violence was never acceptable behaviour in sport, especially children's sport and it was certainly not acceptable from spectators. 

"With so many children present, it is disturbing and disappointing behaviour," he said. 

The Wagga Wagga Netball Association condemned the incident after children and parents were left shocked and upset on what was supposed to be a day of friendly competition. 

"It's very disappointing behaviour from adults at a kids' sporting event," association president Lisa Frow said. 

She said the incident would be discussed at the association's executive meeting on Monday "to work out what can be done to prevent this happening again".

"It's not really a spectator code of behaviour issue; as I understand, it was a personal issue that got out of hand, but it happened at our facility and it's not good for us or the kids involved," she said. 

"We don't want that sort of behaviour at the netball."

The association will consider bans for two men.

The Daily Advertiser