Blues recruit Elijah Hollands cops suspension for 2024 season after drug possession charge

Carlton recruit Elijah Hollands has been slapped with a two-game AFL ban after admitting to cocaine possession.

Hollands was found guilty of conduct unbecoming by the AFL after appearing in Southport Magistrates Court last month on a drug possession charge.

The 21-year-old was still a Gold Coast-listed player when he was found in The Star casino with less than one gram of cocaine inside his wallet.

Hollands moved to the Blues during the trade period following three seasons with the Suns. Carlton gave up a future third-round pick and pick No.26 to the Gold Coast in his acquisition.

Carlton recruit Elijah Hollands in action during the 2023 VFL Preliminary Final match. (Photo by Russell Freeman/AFL Photos via Getty Images)

News of his drug possession charge became public just a day after Hollands was traded to Carlton, but the Blues insist they knew about the court case when they recruited the former No.7 draft pick.

He will not be available for Carlton’s first two games of the 2024 season against the Brisbane Lions and Richmond, or be eligible to play in practice matches or in the VFL.

Hollands has completed a drug diversion course since appearing in court.

“AFL Players are well educated when it comes to the harms associated with the use of illicit substances and have a responsibility to themselves, their clubs and their careers to uphold community expectations,” AFL general counsel Stephen Meade said.

Meanwhile, Melbourne’s Joel Smith remains provisionally suspended by the AFL after testing positive to cocaine.

Smith was caught with the illicit drug in his system through an in-competition doping test.

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