The Warriors squad may be boosted by loan players from rivals clubs or even a retired NRL star. Image by David Gray/AAP PHOTOS

rugby league

NRL to reconsider Warriors’ loan players

2020-05-20 00:02:12

The NRL will reconsider the Warriors’ request for a loan player with the prospect to be discussed at a commission meeting next week.

The Warriors have been riddled with injuries after utility back Adam Keighran became the third player to join an already full casualty ward in the past week.

Of most concern is their middle, where Leeson Ah Mau (pectoral), Jazz Tevaga, Bunty Afoa and Jackson Frei (all knees) have all suffered major injuries.

Of those, only Tevaga is a chance of returning this year.

The club’s plight is made significantly harder because they cannot easily fly in from New Zealand players who would usually be reserve graders from outside their top 30.

It means they will likely be forced to call on development players to face St George Illawarra on May 30, or play players out of position.

A request from the club to have loan players from other Australian clubs was denied last weekend given loan players are against NRL rules.

But ARL Commission chairman Peter V’landys said it would now be back on the table for discussion at next Thursday’s commission meeting.

“We are looking at that and that will be decided at the commission meeting on the 28th of May,” V’landys told AAP.

“Needless to say we have a lot of sympathy for the Warriors so we will try and assist where we can.”

Warriors chief executive Cameron George claimed this week other clubs were happy to loan players, which would be helpful until Tevaga returned.

“Because of our restrictions, loaning a player would be a sensible thing for the integrity of the competition to maintain certain standards,” George said earlier this week.

“To simply say we’ve still got 28 (fit) players (isn’t right), they can’t all play front row.”

The Warriors’ struggles have prompted Cronulla legend Paul Gallen to say he would come out of retirement to ease the club’s prop crisis if he received a call.

Several rival players have also lent their support to the Warriors, hopeful the NRL will make concessions after their efforts to help the competition restart.

“They have sacrificed a lot to try and get our job and game up and running,” Canterbury prop Dylan Napa said.

“We can’t thank them enough.

“When it comes to injuries and all that, I think we should definitely be trying to help them out for sure.”