NRL players who leave a “bubble” for injury treatment before returning would be forced to stand down and isolate for two weeks. Picture: AAP
NRL players who leave a “bubble” for injury treatment before returning would be forced to stand down and isolate for two weeks. Picture: AAP

Bubble blow: 14-day curveball to test NRL clubs’ depth

In a move that would ensure player welfare but test club depth, players who leave a "bubble" for injury treatment before returning would be forced to stand down and isolate for two weeks.

Under a proposal being considered by the NRL innovation committee, any outsiders entering a regional location bubble would also be forced into a 14-day lockdown.

The development comes as the NRL seeks advice from an infectious disease specialist who plans infection control protocols around sporting sides.

The Daily Telegraph has been told an option being discussed would result in any player, official or coach who entered the bubble after lockdown being isolated for two weeks.

 

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The move would ensure player safety but could drain a roster should several players be injured in one match and forced off-site for treatment.

This could affect the number of players each club would be permitted to take on the road. It would also push clubs to have injured players treated inside the bubble.

NRL officials aren't concerned about club depth, only the health of their players.

Possible lockdown locations will be further discussed at an NRL innovation committee meeting on Thursday.

 

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An infectious disease specialist has been offering advice to innovation committee head Wayne Pearce yet wants to remain anonymous.

Pearce has been speaking with numerous other medical experts in various fields.

Asked about the infectious disease specialist, Pearce said: "We want an understanding of what we can do to put the best protocols in place to minimise the risk of our players contracting the virus. We have to work out what environment we are going into. Are we going to have one bubble? Two? Or multiple bubbles?"

Originally published as Bubble blow: 14-day curveball to test NRL clubs' depth



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