North Queensland forward Tariq Sims says wrestling in rugby league needs to be better policed.
North Queensland forward Tariq Sims has called for rugby league’s wrestling techniques to be cleaned up, as he prepares to face a South Sydney team whose use of the tactic has generated plenty of controversy.
Seven Souths players have been involved in incidents identified by the NRL judiciary as involving unnecessary pressure in tackles this year.
Manly’s Steve Matai and Brisbane’s Sam Thaiday have suffered injuries attributed to the Rabbitohs’ defensive techniques in successive weeks, with Ben Te’o hit with a four-week ban for his effort on the former Broncos’ skipper.
Sims is returning to the Cowboys’ starting lineup for Saturday’s clash following a one-game suspension of his own for a crusher tackle – but he says wrestling tactics need to be better policed.
“I think I heard Sam Thaiday say a team that doesn’t practice wrestling, are liars,” said Sims.
“It (wrestling) is a major part of our game now, but it’s a part that needs to be cleaned up.
“The NRL are doing their best to police it, but sometimes things happen on the football field that we can’t control.
“A lot of people say they could have avoided that tackle if (you did something different) but when you are playing football, it’s a fast and furious game.
“It’s not where you can just pause it and then slow-mo frame-by-frame what everyone does.
“We’ve just got to become better at policing that and it’s up to us for the duty of care for the players as well.
“They (Souths) have got a big forward pack, For me personally it’s an exciting challenge to go up against big fellows like that, because that’s where you find out a lot about yourself.”
Cowboys forward Gavin Cooper said the Rabbitosh pushed the boundaries with their wrestling techniques.
“They do it well, they do it inside the law,” Cooper told AAP.
“They really tinker on it there for a little bit, but that’s the way they play.
“A couple of boys like to hold you up and then the third man in tries to get you on the ground and do what they can to push the boundaries and they obviously practice for it.
“But you don’t really think about it too much when you’re out there on the field, unless you get put in a different position that you’re not really used to being in.
“But when you are out on the field, all you are worried about are completing your sets and getting up quick and playing the ball, so you’re not too worried about someone flying in, and chopping you around the knees.”