McDonald says he'll debate Folau issue - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

McDonald says he'll debate Folau issue

By Wayne Heming 10/06/2010 11:42:37 AM Comments (0)

Queensland Rugby League (QRL) chairman John McDonald says he'll be happy to debate whether rules should be introduced preventing Israel Folau playing in the third Origin match.

But as far as the QRL are concerned Folau is eligible throughout the 2010 season, McDonald said on Thursday.

Angry Australian Rugby League (ARL) chief executive Geoff Carr is considering asking his board to consider rules which would forbid a player who has signed a contract with another football code to play in league's showpiece series.

He's concerned Folau's appearance for Queensland in game three at ANZ Stadium on July 7 could be "hijacked" and prove a marketing coup for the AFL and its Greater Western Sydney franchise who've signed him to a four-year deal to promote and play for them from next year.

Carr was furious, accusing Queensland of putting self-interest ahead of the good of the game when it backflipped on early statements and picked Folau for game 2 in Brisbane next Wednesday after he'd announced his AFL deal.

"We have to think about a Queensland team (with Folau) preparing for game 3 in Western Sydney and playing the game in Western Sydney. It could be a circus," Carr told News Ltd.

McDonald said Queensland representatives would be ready to consider the matter if it was raised.

"I'm happy to debate the issue with them if the meeting is called," McDonald told AAP on Thursday.

"There's an ARL board meeting next week."

Queensland have four of the 10 members on the ARL board, with McDonald among them.

"This is not about winning or losing or for one person, it's about what's best for the game of rugby league."

The ARL board would need more than a 6-4 vote to change it's rules and prevent Folau from playing in the third Origin game.

"Six to four is not a convincing margin but if it were a unanimous decision, then it should happen," said McDonald.

"If there needs to be a constitutional change, the vote would need to be 75 per cent in favour of changing the rules.

"As far as we (Queensland) are concerned the player is eligible to play rugby league for the 2010 season.

"If he signs on after the season to go somewhere else, he'd still be playing."

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