BALLARAT will be without Sam Caldow for this Saturday's second semi-final against North Ballarat City after the key defender accepted a one-match ban for charging.
Caldow was yellow-carded and had his number taken for a hit on Sunbury captain Andrew Duhau in the fourth quarter of Sunday's 74-point elimination final win over the Lions.
The decision to take the set penalty means Caldow will be absent for the clash with North Ballarat City, where the winner progresses to the grand final.
Ballarat coach Ash Baker told The Courier the decision to accept the penalty and not take the charge to the tribunal where Caldow would risk getting a larger suspension was influenced by the Swans gaining a double chance with the weekend's victory.
"If we win, he is right for the grand final, if we lose, he's right for the preliminary final," Baker said.
"It was one of those ones we just thought would be best to take the week."
Baker said it was frustrating that the incident happened so deep in the game, when the result was effectively in the Swans' keeping.
"He is aggressive by nature, a bit too aggressive on this stage," Baker said.
"It's disappointing that it came really, really late, but it's hard to curb the way some guys play."
Baker said Caldow was an integral part of the team's structure and he would be missed for the clash against the Ballarat Football League minor premiers.
The club will also monitor the progress of big marking Luke Brennan, who struggled through the second half of Sunday's match after a heavy knock in the third quarter.
Baker said Brennan copped a teammate's knee to the back and rated him a "50-50" chance to play in the encounter with North City.
Meanwhile, Sunbury's Luke Neville will miss the opening game of next season after taking a one-week penalty for striking.
Neville was reported for a hit on Swan Chris Prockter.