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“I want to stamp it out” – The 75-player lawsuit against the RFL is something NRL boss Peter V’landys wants to avoid for current players

NRL boss Peter V’landys will continue to put strong measures in place to prevent a repeat of the current head-related illnesses that are affecting hundreds of former rugby league players.

Ex-Great Britain scrum-half Bobbie Goulding is one of 75 former professionals who are launching a legal case against the Rugby Football League, with claim having the potential reach into the tens of millions of pounds.

Their case is based off a lack of protection by the governing body around head injuries, leading to the likes of dementia, Parkinson’s and epilepsy.

Speaking to the Daily Telegraph as part of a complete review of the game down under, V’landys has reiterated his determination to protect players at all costs, allowing the game’s current stars to avoid the aforementioned illnesses later in life, which will in turn protect the NRL from any potential lawsuits in the years to come.

“What I am concerned about is making sure we have the best and safest game for the player,” he said.

“I don’t want any person who plays our game to suffer any after-effects with brain damage or concussions. That’s my aim. And that’s why we launched the crackdown on cheap shots around the head. I want to stamp it out of the game and I am determined to do that.”

Meanwhile, V’landys also confirmed in the report, which detailed all the NRL’s current finances, that an 18th team could join the competition sooner than 2027.

The Dolphins, who will be led by Wayne Bennett and Kristian Woolf, will become the NRL’s 17th club in 2023 and the competition’s boss confirmed that the 18th club may be brought in quicker than expected.

“Yes, there is an 18th team on the horizon. We will see how the Dolphins go. “It (an 18th team) could be earlier than 2027.

“Next year will tell us a lot about expansion and the markets we must explore. We have put our foot in the water now and it will tell us if expansion is worthwhile.”

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