Sam Kerr’s legal team will attempt to have her racially aggravated harassment charge thrown out of London’s Kingston Crown Court on April 26, arguing the 12-month period it took for the charge to be handed down constitutes a breach of process.

Kerr’s night out in Twickenham in January 2023 only became public earlier this month when she appeared in court via video link to enter her not guilty plea. The news came as a surprise to almost everyone in the Australian football community, including Football Australia CEO James Johnson and Matildas manager Tony Gustavsson.

The subsequent fortnight has seen discourse sprout in numerous directions, from flippant adulation of Aussie larrikinism abroad to more serious debates on what constitutes racism. Even Australia’s sagest and strongest advocate of human rights, Craig Foster, has reneged on his deeply-considered moral standpoint. Details of the incident have bled out slowly and only increased its severity, with the latest revelation that Kerr was detained in a police cell for a period following the altercation.

‘Sam’s legal team are going to try, in April, to have the charge thrown out or potentially reduced down from the enhanced aggravated racial charge, and could do so if they can prove there can be an abuse of process here’, Tracey Holmes of The Sports Ambassador podcast told Box2Box.

‘In the UK, looking at the annual report of the Crown Prosecutor for the year 2022/23, in that calendar year they had 400,000 prosecutions. This is a system that is totally overloaded and to my mind, that might give some indication as to why this has taken so long already, and may take another year if the trial actually goes ahead.’

Although Chelsea are her primary employers, few felt it acceptable Kerr had left Football Australia in the dark for fourteen months since the incident. Where public opinion splintered was on the grounds of racism; can an Australian of Indian heritage, two nations colonised by Britain, inflict racial hurt on a British police officer with the phrase ‘stupid white bastard’ (Kerr’s legal team will argue she said ‘stupid white cop)?

‘There are people that very definitely say there is no way a white cop could feel harassed or threatened by a person like Sam Kerr, of Indian heritage, from what has been a marginalised LGBTQI+ community.

‘But, if you really want to talk about power imbalance, that’s always shifting. Many people would say we don’t know anything about the police officer in this story; I guarantee he’s not earning millions of dollars. So we can’t judge that way, or the other, by saying he’s more privileged than anybody else in this scenario.’

‘The law she’s been charged with is aggravated racial harassment – that doesn’t define that you have to be from, what we’d consider, a marginalised or minority group, doesn’t mention any particular colour, so in fact if you use anybody’s racial profile in an harassing way then you’ve fallen into this kind of territory that they will try to prosecute.’

Kerr remains the captain of the nation’s current most beloved sporting side in the Matildas, although that she’s sidelined with long-term knee injury gives Football Australia time to let the case play out, and ponder its action in due course.

The team will play their 13th straight sold-out match on home soil in June before heading to Paris for the Olympics (almost certainly sans-Kerr due to injury), and the Federation will be desperate to retain the sense of wholesome family appeal that has blown into a phenomenon since last year’s World Cup.

‘Football Australia are in a very difficult situation because Australian fans adore Sam, she’s captain of the Matildas who have done so much to galvanise all the emotion and support through the World Cup and many years leading up, so she’s held in very high regard.

‘It did seem totally out of the blue and at odds with the aura around Sam and the team. They fronted up and I give them credit for that. It took well into the second day before they were actually able to have a chat, so clearly there is something wrong with the relationship.

‘I understand supporters, and non-supporters, get very wound up over these stories but that’s not something sports governing bodies have the privilege of, they can’t be too emotional in any decision because there’s too much riding on this.’