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Aussie rules player swoops in to save pitch-invading toddler from getting nailed by player

An amateur Aussie rules player has been applauded for his decision to abandon playing a game to ensure the safety of a toddler who had wandered onto the field.

Alex McLeod was playing for St Bernards in their Victorian Amateur Football Association (VAFA) game against the Old Melburnians on Saturday when a girl walked onto the field during the second quarter.

To make matters worse, the youngster decided to walk on with the ball in the same area, meaning there was plenty of action and men running at full speed contesting possession - clearly not the best place for a toddler to be.

McLeod then sprung in to action, swooping across to pick up the young girl and get her to safety despite the fact a teammate was attempting to pass him the ball because he was unmarked.

Instead, the ball bobbled across the sideline and McLeod was able to hand off the child to some spectators while the crowd applauded his heroics.

McLeod said it was one of the best carries he's had.

"(I) was relieved that I didn’t drop her as I’d been fumbling the football all game!" he told Fox Sports.

VAFA saw the funny side of the incident, releasing a statement after the match.

“We can report the little girl left the game safe and sound as she looks forward to donning the Snow Dogs women's jumper in about 15 years,” the league wrote.

Unfortunately for McLeod and St Bernards, Old Melburnians went on to win the match 49-39.