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'Cowardly grubs' - Oz Prime Minister weighs in on Tayla Harris photo storm

The AFLW star has labelled comments on an incredible picture of her in full flight as ‘sexual abuse on social media’.

THE PRAISE HAS come from far and wide for AFLW star Tayla Harris after this week’s photograph storm, with Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison one of the many across the world to have voiced his opinion.

AFLW BLUES MAGPIES Carlton Blues ace Tayla Harris was targeted on social media this week. Source: AAP/PA Images

An incredible picture of the Carlton Blues player in full flight was captured at the weekend, but online trolling she has slammed as “sexual abuse” followed.

Channel 7, a broadcast sponsor of the sport in Australia, deleted their post of the picture — which was snapped by Michael Wilson — after ‘reprehensible’ comments were made.

After coming under fire for their decision to delete, they re-posted the brilliant image with an apology.

While Harris — who’s also a professional boxer — tweeted; “Here’s a pic of me at work… think about this before your derogatory comments, animals,” on Tuesday morning, she’s since come down harder on the internet trolls’ actions.

“The comments I saw were sexual abuse, if you can call it that, because it was repulsive and it made me uncomfortable,” the 21-year-old said. “That is what I would consider sexual abuse on social media.”

tayla Source: Tayla Harris Twitter.

And Australian PM Morrison is one of many who have weighed in on the controversy, blasting the trolls as “cowardly grubs”.

“I think they’re grubs,” he told reporters in Melbourne. “I think they’re cowardly grubs, who need to wake up to themselves.”

He added that this is “nothing new these days sadly” but noted that women “tend to be the target for an inordinate share of the abuse that happens online and I think that’s a shameful indictment on the grubs who get on there.”

“Would they say it to our face?” he asked. “No, they haven’t got the guts to do that. They’re cowards. They’re weak.

“They are… acting out some sort of hatred in a way which really just lessens them as people.”

tayla tweet Source: Tayla Harris Twitter.

Former Kerry star Kieran Donaghy also condemned the unacceptable behaviour on this morning’s Off The Ball AM:

“Us as men and people in general have to start calling out these people,” he said.

“I’ve two daughters and if they’re going to go on and play football or basketball or any code, and the relative body is going to put up a picture of them in action… if these dickheads are going to come in with this kind of stuff it’s reckless.”

The four-time All-Ireland winner added: “We have inter-county players, soccer players and they’re being bullied online on a regular basis. We need to get a bit harder on the trolls and almost embarrass them. Its such a terrible act, it’s bullying.

“Don’t stand for it. But I think we as adults stand for it in Whatsapp groups, on Twitter, on social media. We just [say], ‘Will we bother even messing with this fella?’”

- With additional reporting from AFP.

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Emma Duffy

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