Jackson Hastings takes stance on John Asiata tackle technique and Paul Wellens’ comments

Former Super League Man of Steel Jackson Hastings has had his say on all the fallout from John Asiata’s tackles which ended the respective seasons of St Helens duo Alex Walmsley and Agnatius Paasi.

Asiata escaped any punishment from the RFL’s Match Review Panel for the similar incidents which saw the Leigh star go in with force at both players legs prior to them getting injured.

Saints boss Paul Wellens claims his team suffered four injuries from the Challenge Cup semi-final at the Halliwell Jones Stadium on Saturday, and that all four were because of the same style of tackle from Asiata.

The Match Review Panel determined that Asiata had done nothing wrong in any of the incidents, and he is now free to play in this weekend’s match against Wigan Warriors.

That news forced Wellens to speak passionately in a press conference on Monday about the game’s governing body failing to protect the players from serious injuries, believing Asiata should have been punished for leaving Walmsley (12 weeks) and Paasi (9 months) sidelined.

Wellens also compared the incident to that of Morgan Knowles earlier on the season, with Knowles banned for a tackle that saw Wigan’s Mike Cooper suffer a long-term injury.

The fallout has split opinion online, with many fans and media back Wellens comments with others believing Asiata to be innocent – including former Super League referee Richard Silverwood who described the tackles as ‘legal’ in line with the game’s current laws.

Unfortunately though, some of that defeat has been taken too far with Asiata and his family subject to death threats over the days since the final, behaviour that has been condemned by many online.

Now, former Man of Steel Jackson Hastings has input his opinion, believing that no player ever goes out on the field to injure an opponent, while in a separate tweet he praised Wellens for sticking up for his players.

“I haven’t seen every tackle from the CC Semi and hope the boys injured have very speedy recoveries,” said Hastings.

He continued: “I’ve been on the end of season ending tackle and still can say whole heartedly no one intends to ever hurt another player, ever. Certainly disagree with the death threats.

“Also respect Paul sticking up for his players.”

Tom Amone has also taken to Twitter to condemn the actions of those directing abuse and death threats the way of his Leigh teammate Asiata.

“Very unfortunate what happened on the weekend,” said Amone. “I hope the Saints boys have a speedy recovery.

“But no matter what will always have my tokos back! Just remember before you keyboard warriors start sending threats to him he has a beautiful family that see that stuff.