NRL statement: Sam Burgess

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THE National Rugby League has today advised South Sydney Rabbitohs player Sam Burgess that he must show cause why he should not be issued with a breach notice over public comments made about the judiciary process.

All players are bound by the NRL Code of Conduct which prohibits a player from commenting adversely on the NRL Judiciary.

Mr Burgess has agreed to meet NRL chief executive Todd Greenberg to explain his comments and why he should not be issued with a breach notice.

Mr Greenberg said the NRL Judiciary was an independent body chaired by a distinguished Supreme Court Judge.

"On face value, Sam's comments about the judiciary breach our Code of Conduct and are offensive to both the Chairman and members of the panel who carry out their duties impartially, without fear or favour,'' he said. 

"We take a pragmatic view about most of the debate that occurs around the game. However, the NRL Judiciary is a longstanding and independent process based on the principles of natural justice in our court system.

"Our Chair is an esteemed Judge of the highest calibre and our panel members are former high-profile players who are independent from clubs. The integrity of the system and the people in it should never be questioned."

Mr Greenberg said all players have the opportunity to discuss issues about the game privately with the NRL at any point.

"I've spoken to Sam today and invited him to meet face to face to discuss the issues he has and explain his comments."

The Rugby League Players Association have been notified of the action and invited to attend the meeting. A decision about whether a breach notice will be issued will be determined after the meeting.