General NRL To Crack Down On Drugs



A hardline policy on illicit drugs and changes to the contentious golden point rule could be in place for the 2007 National Rugby League (NRL) season after this week's chief executives' meeting in Sydney.

The NRL on Thursday tabled a draft policy on drugs testing and subsequent penalties which will make the players the most-monitored of any Australian sporting competition.

The policy ensures that a minimum of 1100 drug tests would be conducted next year, with each club having to follow rigid procedures.

Suspended fines and compulsory counselling would follow a first offence, further fines would escalate during a second, while a third offence would incur a compulsory 12 match suspension, the right to cancel a club contract and the loss of all confidentiality provisions.

Clubs have until January to respond to the draft policy.

The meeting also discussed changes to the golden point rule, and whether it should be changed to golden try to stop extra time becoming a glorified field goal shootout after the scores were tied at fulltime.

A possible change would see the first tryscorer in extra time declared the winner, but if no tries were scored any field goals or penalty goals would decide the result.

New Zealand Warriors coach Ivan Cleary said this month the golden point rule needed a review.

"We saw this year teams were just trying to kick a field goal and it put a lot of pressure on referees," he said.

"It's been in the rules for a few years now but I don't know if it's achieving what it's meant to achieve.

"I don't see anything wrong with teams getting a (competition) point each."

Clubs would also get the chance to provide written submissions on the golden point rule.

Also discussed on Thursday was a plan to introduce a national under-20 competition by 2008, with all games played as curtainraisers to NRL matches.

The NRL board will also discuss the meeting's vote for a return to Sunday semifinals for weeks two and three of the playoffs after they were held on Friday and Saturday this year.

The meeting also voted for judicial records to be modified to reward good on-field behaviour.

Where a player's first offence is a careless grand one tackle, he won't automatically incur a second offence loading on his next charge.


It seems to me; every year its the same. they make the statement saying they want to crack down on this policy..etc
But are the players going inline with that? Are they even understanding the ruling? Coz every year it just keeps happenig. Some are exploited and some are not.

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