42 hours ago
Mitsubishi Electric Bulldogs captain Andrew Ryan has been cleared by the NRL judiciary to take his place in this Friday night's blockbuster clash against Parramatta after successfully fighting the grade 2 careless high tackle charge he incurred during Saturday night's win over the Dragons.
The three-man panel took close to 30 minutes to come up with the not guilty decision, a much needed result for the Bulldogs who are already without international forwards Willie Mason (wrist) and Mark O'Meley (torn hamstring) due to injury.
"I think I was committed to the tackle to try and lock the ball up, I think there was no time to adjust to the tackle I was going to make," Ryan told the judiciary during the 80 minute hearing.
Series of still-frame photos were also used and the club tendered two reports - one from a biomechanics expert Dr Andrew McIntosh and sports information technologist Warren Brennan.
Bulldogs director Jim Hall said Brennan's report claimed that Ryles dropped 27cm in 0.2 of a second between Jarrad Hickey's tackle and the time Ryan connected.
"Point two of a second is less than a blink of an eye," Hall commented.
However NRL counsel Peter Kite claimed Ryan's left arm was always rising as he went to make the tackle and argued that even if Jason Ryles had not dropped, Ryan would have still struck the Dragons prop in the "neck or jaw".
Bulldogs CEO Malcolm Noad, who attended the hearing, said, "We're grateful that the judiciary carefully considered our argument and has cleared Andrew of the charge. This Friday's game is a big one and Andrew's experience and leadership will be needed.
"I want to thank Warren Brennan from BBG Sports for his assistance, and I want to give a special mention to Bulldogs supporter Chris Riediger who contacted the Club yesterday to suggest we use the Channel Nine technology. Goes to show how clever our fans are."