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Jared Waerea-Hargreaves gets one-game ban

Sydney Roosters prop Jared Waerea-Hargreaves will miss Saturday night's qualifying final against Manly after failing to beat a dangerous contact charge at the NRL judiciary on Tuesday night.
Jared Waerea-Hargreaves gets one-game ban
by AAP

By Steve Jancetic

SYDNEY, Sept 10 AAP - Sydney Roosters prop Jared Waerea-Hargreaves will miss Saturday night's qualifying final against Manly after failing to beat a dangerous contact charge at the NRL judiciary on Tuesday night.

In a cruel blow to the Roosters' finals chances, Waerea-Hargreaves was unsuccessful in arguing his actions were not careless, with the Kiwi Test prop to miss one game and have 38 carry-over points hanging over his head throughout the finals series.

"Pretty disappointed with that result," Waerea-Hargreaves said.

"I thought we had a fair case there."

Asked if he had to change his running style, Waerea-Hargreaves said: "Not at all."

Waerea-Hargreaves argued his actions were instinctive and there was no malice or intent after raising his forearm into the throat of South Sydney back-rower Chris McQueen in last Friday's minor premiership decider at ANZ Stadium.

The Roosters enforcer claimed he was using his arm as a bumper to protect himself while carrying the ball.

"It's a reaction thing, you've got no time, it's an instinctive thing. As a front rower you use a bumper to protect yourself."

Questioned by judiciary counsel prosecutor Peter Kite as to why he did not leave his arm by his side instead of raising it Waerea-Hargreaves said: "that's not what we do on a footy field".

Kite was strong in his submission to the judiciary panel - which consisted of former players Chris McKenna, Sean Garlick and Paul Whatuira - that they were obligated to draw a line in the sand to prevent similar actions being carried out in the future.

"You can't use your forearm as a weapon to repel a defender," Kite said.

"There has to be a message to all levels of the game that this level of bumping or bracing is not acceptable."

The loss of Waerea-Hargreaves will hurt a Roosters pack already missing NSW Origin forward Boyd Cordner against a Sea Eagles pack set to be boosted by the return from injury of Anthony Watmough and Brenton Lawrence for Saturday night's second leg of the finals double-header.

Roosters' coach Trent Robinson named a six-man bench earlier on Monday with either Luke O'Donnell or Martin Kennedy set to come into the starting lineup to replace Waerea-Hargreaves.

Speaking earlier on Tuesday Manly coach Geoff Toovey admitted the absence of Waerea-Hargreaves would be a blow to the opposition.

"He'd be a loss, a marquee player like him," Toovey said.

"But they've got plenty of depth at the Roosters, I'm sure they'll replace him with a quality player."




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