Sydney Roosters coach Trent Robinson insists the NRL is working hard to educate young players. Image by Dan Himbrechts/AAP PHOTOS

rugby league

Robinson backs NRL stance on education

2020-03-11 15:07:52

Sydney Roosters coach Trent Robinson maintains the NRL is doing all it can to educate players about their off-field responsibilities despite the code being embroiled in yet another untimely controversy.

Canterbury duo Corey Harawira-Naera and Jayden Okunbor have been stood down from training on the eve of the Bulldogs’ season opener against Parramatta for allegedly taking school girls back to their hotel following a coaching clinic in Port Macquarie last month.

While Robinson was circumspect when commenting on the matter as Bulldogs and the NRL investigate, the three-time premiership-winning mentor was adamant the message was “definitely” getting through to players as to how they must behave in society.

“I love the stance that the NRL took a couple of years ago to protect the integrity of the game.

“They’ve backed that up not only in action, but also in education,” Robinson said on Wednesday.

“So I feel like we’re on the right track there – the way that our game is supporting young players coming into the game, the way they’re educating them and that has been shown in, I think, a good year for the NRL last year.”

The Roosters routinely travel together for off-season bonding tours, most recently to Las Vegas last October, and Robinson has never felt the need to address his charges about their responsibilities.

“You don’t have to,” he said.

“The education piece is important.

“So the NRL has their programs and there’s also daily education that goes on at each clubs by the way that people act, through the staff and the coaching staff and all of that and also the senior players.

“So it’s unspoken standards that lead the way every day.”

He said it was important not to judge the Bulldogs pair.

“You’re talking about things that are being investigated. You’ve got to be really careful about making statements about things you don’t know fully about yet,” Robinson said.

“And in my case, that’s where I’m at with it. So I can speak about the Roosters, I can speak about the education that goes on, but it seems like the NRL and the Bulldogs have taken steps towards that pretty quickly.”