Jeff Dickinson-Fox reviews the campaign which saw Melbourne Storm crowned premiers in 2017.
5 days ago
Ricky Stuart has become the latest coach to call on the NRL to stamp out the controversial chicken wing tackle before it results in serious injuries to players.
The Kangaroos and Cronulla mentor said the manoeuvre, which involves a player getting his arm wrenched behind his back, was becoming more prevalent and it was a major concern.
"I think (the chicken-wing) might have been around a little bit over the last couple of years but I think it is being used a lot more now and I don't like it," Stuart told Sydney radio 2KY.
"It really is a trend and the league has to step up and be man enough to come out and make some rules and some guidelines as to what they are going to do because at the moment they are not doing anything."
Stuart said the problem originated from club's employing wrestling coaches.
"They get these wrestling blokes in who have played no league at all and they are sending blokes out there to hurt people and somebody is going to pop a shoulder, somebody will do a ligament or something in regards to an arm," said Stuart.
"... these wrestling coaches have got some answering to do."
The Sharks also employ a wrestling coach but Stuart insisted it was for a different purpose than that of his rival NRL clubs.
"We don't coach wrestling holds," he said.
"They have a bit of wrestling drills we use as fitness and as a type of technique in regards to getting players down to the ground.
"It is not so much the holds, it is the amount of number of people involved."
Melbourne Storm prop Adam Blair became the first player charged with the chicken-wing tackle after an incident involving Brisbane's Michael Ennis last Friday night but escaped suspension with an early guilty plea.
The original incident angered Broncos coach Wayne Bennett, who said post-match the NRL needed to rub the chicken-wing out before every team started to adopt the technique.
But Stuart said the Blair tackle wasn't the best example of a chicken-wing.
"I don't think Blair's example is the right example to use because Ennis wasn't hurt, he showed that," said Stuart.
"I don't think it was wrong by dragging him down by the arm. It didn't hurt anybody."