No butts, says Maroons forward Hannant - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

No butts, says Maroons forward Hannant

By Wayne Heming 09/06/2010 06:17:02 PM Comments (0)

Queensland forward Ben Hannant has no complaints with Parramatta star Jarryd Hayne beating a headbutt charge to play for NSW in Wednesday night's second Origin game but says questions should be asked was it a smart decision.

Queensland always knew Hayne would get off the charge given the Blues are facing a humbling fifth-straight series loss.

Evidence presented to the NRL's judiciary panel, which included former Queensland Origin star Bob Lindner, clearly showed Hayne dipping his head into Melbourne fullback and Origin rival Billy Slater's face.

But Hayne, who'll shift to fullback and oppose Slater again, was acquitted because of the peculiar wording of the charge.

"It's an interesting one but they (judiciary) have gone with it," said Hannant as Queensland pulled on the boxing gloves at an inner-city gym on Wednesday in a possible prelude to Wednesday night's on-field action.

"It's a decision the NRL have made. It's up to you guys (media) and the public to be asking questions of the NRL if it's right."

Hannant, who rarely completes a game without requiring stitches in his head, said the competitive nature of the game, especially Origin, meant there was always going to be times when players did things they often wished they hadn't.

"Obviously we play a physical game, it does get heated and you do things in the heat of the moment that you probably regret," said Hannant, lining up for Origin number six next week.

"When you play a physical, full-on contact sport, you can understand people snapping every now and again."

Hannant, pencilled in to come off the bench, after playing just one game in several weeks, said most players took the field to play hard and within the rules.

"Things happen in football. I'm sure the fans enjoy seeing it every now and then," said the 110kg prop who is heading back to Brisbane next year.

"As long as it's not all the time and it happens on the spur of the moment you can understand it.

"As a player you don't go out there to try and hurt someone illegally, you just deal with what happens at the time."

Hannant backed Slater to win his battle with Hayne again, rating the Storm custodian as the best in the business.

"Billy's been number one for Australia now for how long?.

"He's dominated the Origin series for four years. His record speaks for itself ... how many premierships has he won?

"He's not a big bloke but he keeps turning up.

"I love watching him play, I love being on his team."

Hannant believes the fierce rivalry between Slater and Hayne which almost got out of hand last weekend in a club game, was great for rugby league fans.

"They're both competitors and they both want to be the best so things are going to get heated every now and then," he said.

"You can't expect a boxer to be sparring with someone he's competing with all the time not to angry and put one on his chin after the bell."

Slater and Hayne involve themselves heavily, getting into the ruck, bringing the ball back from kicks and sliding into backline raids.

"They put their body on the line, all fullbacks do, it one of the toughest positions in the game," said Hannant.

The Bulldogs forward said it was good to be back in Origin camp around so many great players and great mates.

"There's many different characters, there's 'out there' sorta characters, quiet characters, and humble characters and we all get along so tight," he said.

"It's like a club team we've been together for so long.

"Even if you've only been here for a couple of games you still feel part of the team."

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