AAP Rugby

Raiders call for common sense on foul play

By AAP Newswire

Canberra halfback Aidan Sezer says rugby league isn't a black and white sport and foul play cases should be judged separately in the wake of the NRL's crackdown on dangerous play.

NRL referees have come under fire in recent weeks following the handling of a head knock suffered by Warriors centre Peta Hiku.

It was one of several incident where officials have been accused of not looking after players.

North Queensland and Maroons enforcer Josh McGuire was charged three times by the match review committee this season before spending time on the sideline.

Raiders centre Nick Cotric became the first player sent off since round 11 last year after upending St George Illawarra centre Tim Lafai on Sunday.

Cotric accepted a three-game ban on Tuesday, but Canberra coach Ricky Stuart suggested he was the scapegoat of an NRL crackdown following a string foul play incidents.

Sezer admitted he'd noticed the whistleblowers being more pedantic over the weekend and said said they needed to assess incidents on a case-by-case basis.

"It's funny, on the weekend I kicked the ball down field and (Tyson) Frizell put a couple of fingers on me and I got a penalty, so I'm all for it if it's going to go our way," Sezer said.

"It's hard because rugby league isn't a black and white sport, anyone who watches it would know that. A bit of common sense has to come into it and I guess judge everything on its merits."

The NRL's handling of concussion has also been in the spotlight after a study last month found evidence of two former players having the degenerative brain condition (CTE).

It sparked law firms into considering class actions against the NRL, similar to what happened in America following the discovery of CTE in NFL players.

But Raiders fullback Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad said it was almost impossible to eradicate concussions in a contact sport.

"In our sport you've got to tackle and sometimes head knocks do come into play. I'm not too sure what they could or would do to prevent those things," Nicoll-Klokstad said.

"It's a contact sport."