18th player rule could add pressure to referees: Annesley
April 7, 2021 11:36 am
The introduction of the 18th player rule yesterday could add more pressure to referees says NRL head of football Graham Annesley.
The ARL Commission gave NRL clubs the green light to use any player from their top 30 squads as an 18th player.
Beginning this weekend, if a team is affected by foul play or three failed head injury assessments during a match, they can bring in an 18th player will only be able to take the field.
This only happens when three players fail a head injury assessment or when a player suffers a match-ending injury caused by foul play, in which the opposing player was either sin-binned or sent off.
Annesley says while this may place a further spotlight on the game’s match officials in the heat of the moment, he was confident they can handle the pressure.