'Embarrassing for our game': George Williams among those to speak out on controversial head contact rules

There has already been five red cards in the Super League – only halfway through round two of the 2024 campaign.
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And players have had their say on the crackdown on high contact after Hull’s Fa'amanu Brown became the latest to be sent off for making direct contact with Ben Currie’s head in a tackle.

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England captain and former Wigan Warriors star George Williams was among those to share their concerns for the direction of the sport on social media.

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Although his side benefited from the red card, going on to claim a 36-10 victory at the Halliwell Jones Stadium, the injured half-back spoke out on the recent controversial decisions that has also seen 13 yellow cards issued by officials.

He shared on ‘X’: “Embarrassing for our game.

“Players it’s time for us to unite, we need a voice within our game going forward!”

Ex-Wigan number nine Sam Powell was sin-binned on Thursday evening, while Liam Watts was sent off against Matt Peet’s Warriors at the Mend-A-Hose Jungle during the opening round.

England captain George Williams has shared his concerns for the sportEngland captain George Williams has shared his concerns for the sport
England captain George Williams has shared his concerns for the sport

The veteran prop was handed a four-match ban by the match review panel.

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St Helens star forward Alex Walmsley made a passionate players union plea via Examiner Live during the week, becoming one of the first players to take a stand against the new rules.

And Salford full-back Ryan Brierley has since shared the same stance, writing: “It’s not just about the head contact situation. It’s about all aspects of the game I feel we should have a voice on.

"It’s just a start, but let’s get 12 captains on a zoom call and have a conversation and let’s take some points to the RFL and see where it takes us.”

The Rugby Football League announced ahead of the season that new rules will see a crackdown on head and neck contact to protect the future of the game and its players.

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It’s a response to the legal proceedings taking place by more than 100 former players over brain injuries, arguing that the governing body did not protect them during their time in the sport.

Current players such as Rhyse Martin, Cam Scott and Chris Atkin and have also joined in on the calls for a players union via their social media channels.