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Spinal specialist wants NRL to ban gang tackles

Discussion in 'News' started by Jethro, Apr 3, 2014.

By Jethro on Apr 3, 2014 at 6:11 PM
  1. Jethro

    Jethro This space is for rent Staff Member Premium Member 2016 Tipping Competitor

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    A prominent spinal specialist says parents should not allow their children to play rugby league until the code bans the gang tackle that left Newcastle Knights player Alex McKinnon facing quadriplegia[​IMG].

    Dr John Yeo from Sydney's Royal North Shore Hospital was part of the campaign in the 1980s that led to changes to scrum rules in rugby union.

    Now he is pushing for a change in rugby league that would ban tackles involving more than two defenders - such as the one that saw McKinnon left with a broken neck and a serious spinal injury.

    "Rugby league is, by allowing the multiple tackle, allowing an unacceptable risk to players - both adult and in children," Dr Yeo said.

    "I would say, 'Look, find another team sport,' until I was satisfied that the rules themselves were protecting the player - the young player particularly'.

    "The multiple tackle to me is too dangerous for people to play, particularly when they reach their teens and later.

    "When that's changed, then I would encourage young people to move on into the senior game and play the game and enjoy it, but only when the rule is changed."

    Dr Yeo said while there is some sympathy within the NRL for change, there is also resistance.

    "Coaches don't seem to grasp the importance of part of our anatomy [that] is not built for the sort of forces that we're allowing it to be applied. So I've written and said this has got to stop," he said.

    The NRL declined Lateline's request to interview the code's chief medical officer, but said injuries like McKinnon's are rare.

    "The NRL this year modified rules for when a third defender joins a tackle but the concept of banning more than two players from a tackle is not one we are considering," it said in a statement.

     

    Push to ban lifting tackles

    McKinnon's plight has also renewed a push from doctors to have lifting tackles banned in all sporting codes.

    Dr Peter Larkins, a former Sports Medicine Australia president, says rugby league needs to take particular notice.

    "Lifting a player off the ground and inverting them is really what we're on about as the dangerous tackle," he said

    "It just doesn't happen in other sports except rugby, so it's clearly one the rugby league needs to look at."

    Dr Larkins says McKinnon's injuries - fractures to the C4 and C5 vertebrae - are consistent with quadriplegia, but it is too early to determine a final outcome.

    "If [McKinnon] has a form of quadriplegia obviously it's going to be a long, long journey in terms of him getting back to functioning in day-to-day activities," he said.

    "Generally these cases require rehabilitation and hospital-based treatment for two to three months."

    The Newcastle Knights and McKinnon's family have rejected unconfirmed reports he may never walk again.

    They say it is too early to tell and that the young player is a fighter.

     

    Jason Om

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-04-02/gang-tackle-ban-nrl-rugby-league-spinal-injury-mckinnon/5360612?section=sport
     

Comments

Discussion in 'News' started by Jethro, Apr 3, 2014.

    1. Jethro

      Jethro This space is for rent Staff Member Premium Member 2016 Tipping Competitor

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      A prominent spinal specialist says parents should not allow their children to play rugby league until the code bans the gang tackle that left Newcastle Knights player Alex McKinnon facing quadriplegia.

      Read More
       
    2. Jethro

      Jethro This space is for rent Staff Member Premium Member 2016 Tipping Competitor

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      A prominent spinal specialist says parents should not allow their children to play rugby league until the code bans the gang tackle that left Newcastle Knights player Alex McKinnon facing quadriplegia.

      Read more.
       
    3. Brookie Brawler

      Brookie Brawler Well-Known Member 2016 Tipping Competitor

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      Banning all lifting tackles (not just when the player is put in a dangerous position, as is the current rule) may make a difference (prevention rather than punishing after the fact), although an increase in Reynolds/Inglis/Fifita style diving for penalties may be a side effect we have to deal with.

      There is no way 3 man tackles can be banned though!

      Think about how frustrating and hard to referee the stripping rule is having to decide if it was a one or 2 man tackle.

      And would players either side of a targeted defender need some sort of 6th sense to decide who will help him out and who will watch on?

      Fingers crossed for the NRL to find some rare common sense before making any more rule changes...
       
    4. sheridanstand78

      sheridanstand78 Well-Known Member

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      The game is so different now, ten metre rule, players all now weighing between 100 -130 kilos, the tackle collisions are ferocious now.

      One way to reduce the impact is to go back to a 5 metre rule, have the one marker rule too, it will help clear the ruck and allow refs to police it better, the game is so fast now that the pinkies are more worried about policing the 10.

      The wrestling has to be stopped too. That is the root of the current problems we have in the ruck.
       
    5. Moondog

      Moondog Grey-beard loon Premium Member 2016 Tipping Competitor

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      Banning lifting tackles may help but rugby league is a contact sport and injuries are always going to occur.
      There is really no easy solution to this.
      The NRL know that fans pay to see a hard physical contest. Any attempt to water down the game will reduce the spectacle in many peoples eyes.
      What happened to Alex McKinnon is appalling but the NRL will want to think long and hard before deciding on making more changes to the fundamental structure of the game.
      The decisions they make now may have far reaching effects down the track...
       
    6. Brookie4eva

      Brookie4eva Well-Known Member

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      I should stop skim reading, totally got the title of this one wrong :blush: :blush:
       
    7. EagleFromMay1967

      EagleFromMay1967 In bed before the room got dark.

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      wishful thinking.
       
    8. Clint

      Clint . Premium Member 2016 Tipping Competitor

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      Yeah same. I had to read it 3 times. The whole 'ban gang' thing just wasn't working for me.
       

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