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Roosters' O'Donnell facing 3-5 week ban

Fiery Sydney Roosters forward Luke O'Donnell has caught the attention of the NRL's judiciary for a 12th time, but younger brother Kyle insists it's a case of being judged on reputation not actions.
Roosters' O'Donnell facing 3-5 week ban
by AAP

By Rob Forsaith

SYDNEY, Aug 20 AAP - Fiery Sydney Roosters forward Luke O'Donnell has caught the attention of the NRL's judiciary for a 12th time, but younger brother Kyle insists it's a case of being judged on reputation not actions.

Luke O'Donnell is facing three to five weeks on the sidelines, meaning he won't play again before the finals unless the competition-leading Roosters successfully challenge a grade-three dangerous throw charge against him on Wednesday.

The former Test forward was cited on Tuesday after up-ending Wests Tigers' Tim Simona in a first-half tackle, which came moments after a scrap with Keith Galloway in the Roosters' 56-14 win at Allianz Stadium on Monday night.

An early guilty plea would sideline O'Donnell for three weeks, further testing the depth of the table-topping Roosters who are in the box seat for the minor premiership.

O'Donnell has already been suspended a total of 26 weeks, with the lowlight being an 11-week ban for striking Canberra's Michael Monaghan in 2003.

Monaghan suffered a broken jaw as a result of the incident.

However O'Donnell has kept his nose relatively clean since signing a 12-month deal with the Roosters in February, when he returned from two injury-marred seasons in Europe's Super League.

Kyle O'Donnell, who is on Penrith's books but yet to play an NRL game for the Panthers, said the grade-three charge was a case of his older brother being unjustly profiled.

"I'm sick of seeing my brother unfairly treated by 'officials'. Hasn't done a damn thing wrong all year and is still treated this way," the 22-year-old posted on Twitter.

"Tell me how he got penalised when Keith Galloway took a swing at him? Isnt that a sin bin offence these days? Rules for some and not 4 others!"

"He did not mean for him (Simona) to flip like that. History should not come into it. Has 0 carry over points."

Kyle O'Donnell later deleted the tweets and apologised, noting he "wrote them in the heat of the moment and didn't intend to cause any offence to anyone".

Roosters utility Daniel Mortimer admitted the NRL premiership favourites will sorely miss O'Donnell if the damaging back-rower is suspended for a spear tackle.

"If we do lose him, we'll definitely miss him," Mortimer said on Tuesday.

"He's a great player and we've got a pretty young pack so his experience ... is really something that our forwards will miss, and us in the middle."

Souths' Jeff Lima and Ashton Sims of North Queensland have already accepted one-match bans relating to incidents at the weekend.

O'Donnell and the Roosters have until Wednesday at noon to decide what to do.




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