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Australian journalist calls on NRL to turn their backs on international game

Australian journalist and former player Paul Kent has called on the NRL to turn its back on international rugby.

He has blamed the World Cup for the increased number of injuries in the NRL this year and has said that the sport shouldn’t have international games every year.

This came on NRL 360 where he said:

“The NRL has got to start to rethink its international schedule out of all of this, you talk about Canterbury, who have now gone and sought an exemption only five rounds in.

“Only five rounds in, because in their 30-man squad they can’t find 21 jumpers. What was it, two weeks ago, Newcastle sought an exemption.

“Because we had the World Cup last year, and we have an international program that fills up all the months after the season now.

“And the players have to have eight weeks holiday according to the CBA, it cuts down on their pre-season which most people tend to believe leads to all these injuries.

“Because they are not quite physically in the shape they need to be to get through the season.”

“I’m talking every year, I get it once every four years… but every year the Kangaroos tour every year.

He also asked the simple question: “Why do we have to grow the international game?”.

“How does Samoa’s performance at the World Cup enhance the NRL who are now looking at clubs having to get exemptions,” he added.

“Do they need eight weeks holiday? If you want to talk about player welfare, which is what the Player’s Association is all about, then maybe they need to re-examine the fact that they are kicking off with just five weeks preparation.

“Which we are already seeing a multitude of injuries across almost every club.”

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Nathanael

    May 12, 2023 at 4:51 pm

    Extremely selfish and short sighted attitude! Sure the NRL is hugely successful but is limited by the lack of popularity outside of New South Wales and Queensland and most of the rest of the World. Australia need to play matches to grow appetite for rugby in AFL dominated states and an international calendar needs to be put in place to grow rugby’s popularity globally which can only make domestic leagues like the NRL more lucrative.

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