Bird grounded for ten weeks - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Bird grounded for ten weeks

By Lane Clark 07/04/2004 08:45:34 PM Comments (0)

Cronulla chief executive Steve Rogers has not ruled out appealing a 10-match ban handed down to a "shattered" Greg Bird for striking at the NRL judiciary.

But Rogers admitted the club would be "pushing it uphill" to successfully appeal the lengthy ban due to the nature of the striking charge Bird received after kneeing South Sydney's Shane Marteene in the head at Aussie Stadium on Saturday night.

Rogers said Bird had been "made an example of" after being slapped with a 10-week ban despite the NRL's judiciary prosecutor Peter Kite recommending an eight to 10 match suspension.

"Its very difficult to appeal in a situation like this given that its a referred charge and prosecution asked for a range of eight to 10 and they've gone to the top end of that - we'll investigate the matter but I think we will be pushing it uphill," he said.

Bird's representative Jim Barnett had argued that there was "some niggle" between the players throughout the weekend match and that Bird had a "brain snap" after receiving a knee to the groin while attempting to tackle Marteene.

"He is shattered, he showed genuine remorse and contrition from day one, he's personally contacted the player involved, he's personally met the player involved, he's written to Souths apologising for his actions," Rogers said.

"If this was something inherent or a feature of his game I could understand the harshness of the penalty, but the kid has had a brain explosion.

"There was a hell of a lot of frustration involved in that game and Greg got caught up in that... and he reacted with a harsh action and paid the ultimate price".

Meanwhile, despite being one of two goalkickers to exceed the NRL's 90-second "shot clock" last weekend, Canberra fullback Clinton Schifcofske was the only one to draw a breach notice.

Schifcofske incurred a $2,000 fine for the club by going nine seconds over the limit for goalkicks while converting his own try in the opening minutes of Saturday night's 26-12 win over Parramatta.

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