While the 2018 #NRL Pre-Season is still a few weeks away, there's a bunch of warm-up clashes happeni...
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It was supposed to be Dell's big day out, but dual international Wendell Sailor lasted just 40 minutes in his comeback match at WIN Stadium last night. After being going down with a fractured cheekbone in the 35th minute, Sailor played on for the final five minutes of the half but was unable to return after the break.
Playing on the wing for the St George Illawarra Dragons, Sailor clashed with Brisbane Broncos five-eighth David Stagg during a tackle, Stagg's elbow coming into contact with Sailor's head. The injury is expected to sideline the former Broncos star for a minimum of four weeks.
With the Dragons going on to post a 28-10 victory, a shattered Sailor left with his wife for hospital before fulltime. After serving two years drugs suspension while playing rugby union, a reformed Sailor returned to rugby league last month. After signing with the Dragons and playing two matches on the south coast, Sailor got the call up to the NRL after Dragons centres Mark Gasnier and Matt Cooper were drafted into the NSW Origin camp.
Meanwhile, the Sonny Bill Williams saga continues to make headlines with the Bulldogs back rower reportedly being 'furious' to being forced to admit to a drinking problem.
The Daily Telegraph reports that Williams wanted more money and more respect from Bulldogs management. But the 22-year-old also spoke of his anger at being 'hung out to dry' in front of the media last year and being forced to declare he had a drinking problem after a number of alcohol-related incidents. Williams blamed former Bulldogs CEO Malcolm Noad for forcing an admission he now claims is false.
The Raiders claim the 25-year-old lock forward reneged on his deal to head to Canberra next season.
On April 29, Smith and the Raiders agreed to a three-year deal. But under NRL's new transfer rules, Penrith were allowed to lodge a final bid to retain his services before the end of this round. It is understood that Panthers officials provided Smith with an indemnity against any court action before he agreed to sign the contract.
Not surprisingly, Raiders officials are talking the talk with chairman John McIntyre saying he was 'confident' the club could now successfully sue for breach of contract.
NRL CEO David Gallop has said he will speak with Penrith and Canberra officials over the weekend.