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Paul Gallen: Don’t hold NRL players to a higher regard

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The NRL season is just one month away from recommencing and a 20-round competition has been confirmed.

The first two rounds will be counted and the ladder will stand with the Grand Final to be played on October 25.

Details about the draw and State of Origin are still to be confirmed.

Former league star Paul Gallen told Mark Levy he’s happy with the details coming out.

“I think 20 rounds is good.

“Thank god we’re not talking about these conference systems anymore, that was just stupid, that was ridiculous. I know we had to look at different options, but that’s out.”

Four players have received fines and a suspended one-match ban for breaking social distancing rules.

Gallen said he supports the punishment and said those calling for harsher penalties were going too far.

“It’s more than fair what’s happened to them.

“Why are rugby league players held to a higher regard, as far as behaviour goes, than the rest of society.

“Everyone else cops a thousand dollar fine, they don’t get fined by their employer. So yes I understand [the players] are held to a higher standard, therefore they are now copping a $20,000 fine from their employer. 

“I’m satisfied with that. I’m happy with that.”

Gallen said the players’ behaviour will not stop the NRL season from going ahead.

“[The NRL] met with the governments today and I don’t think had it jeopardised the start of the season they would have given this particular fine.”

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