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NRL’s Head of Football challenged over concussion crackdown inconsistencies

Article image for NRL’s Head of Football challenged over concussion crackdown inconsistencies

The NRL is under pressure to more clearly define how referees decide how to respond to illegal contact and player injuries.

It remains unclear under what conditions a sin bin, report, or send-off is determined.

When pressed by James Willis, NRL Head of Football Graham Annesley insisted players are adjusting to the crackdown on head contact.

“Penaties and being placed on report is replacing players going to the sin bin and being sent off, which was the full objective when we started this.”

James also questioned another unintended consequence of the crackdown – players milking penalties and staying down – and asked if the NRL would implement mandatory head injury assessments for any player that does so.

“If a player has been genuinely injured and can be addressed on the field, why should he be penalised by having to leave the field, if he’s the victim?” Mr Annesley responded.

“I defy anyone that looks at a video, sees someone have contact with their head … and say that that person wasn’t genuinely injured.”

Press PLAY below to hear the full interview

Image: Chris Hyde/Getty Images

James Willis
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