Paul Kent has urged the NRL to “stand up and show some balls” by banishing all hip-drop tackles from the game.
It comes as Broncos star Patrick Carrigan was handed a four-game suspension for his hip-drop tackle on Jackson Hastings — who will now miss the rest of the season with a fracture in his leg and a syndesmosis injury.
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NRL 360 host Braith Anasta declared the hip-drop tackle “needs to go,” before Kent stressed it was “learned behaviour.”
Kent then called on the NRL to get tough on the tackle given the trauma it’s caused Hastings.
Eels outside back Haze Dunster has also been a victim of the hip-drop tackle this year. He ruptured his ACL, PCL and MCL as a result of the tackle from Dragons forward Tyrell Fuimaono, who received a five-game ban.
“Why’s it even in the game?,” he asked.
“This is what gives me the sh**s. These tackles come into the game that clearly cause injuries and rather than the first coach that sees it, identifies it and says ‘you know what guys, we’re not doing this — get it out,’ they all look around the league and see other clubs doing it so say ‘we’re going to have to do it because you get an extra three seconds in the play the ball.’
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“Forget about poor Jackson Hastings, who’s now got five months with his leg in a cast and now has to go through rehab. That’s the price they’re willing to pay these guys.
“The game’s got to stand up and show some balls and actually get it out of the game.
“If Carrigan gets a two-week or three-week penalty, which is what he’s going to ask for, then you just may as well throw it all away and say ‘you know what guys, do your best… take a baseball bat out with you next time.’
“It’s just a joke.”
Carrigan was referred straight to the judiciary for the tackle and fronted the panel on Tuesday night.
His defence, Nick Ghabar, proposed a two-game ban on Tuesday night, however the NRL counsel put forward a five-to-six game suspension.
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