Rugby League Players’ Association boss Clint Newton has warned the NRL‘s broadcasters to respect the sanctity of the dressing rooms after Victor Radley was filmed simulating a lewd act in post-match State of Origin coverage.
Earlier this week, NRL chief executive Andrew Abdo revealed plans to speak with Radley about the incident, which attracted scrutiny when it was put to air during the Nine Network’s broadcast coverage of NSW’s Origin II win.
You can watch the incident in the video above
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“It’s certainly far from ideal when something like that happens,” Abdo told the Sydney Morning Herald.
“It happened in the sheds, but unfortunately it was captured and broadcast widely. We are looking at it and we’ll be having a conversation with Victor and the NSWRL.”
But Newton defended Radley and said television broadcasters had a responsibility to moderate footage obtained from the sheds.
“The access players give broadcasters needs to be respected and the onus should not be on them,” Newton said.
“The players want to connect with fans and giving access like this to their private environments is one way of doing that, but it was never meant to be entirely unfiltered.”
The RLPA’s collective bargaining agreement with the NRL expires at the end of the season and video access to dressing rooms appears likely to feature in discussions when a new CBA is on the agenda later this year.
The RLPA and NRL will meet next week to discuss historical payments from NRL revenue but not the CBA.
“The dressing room shouldn’t be a reality TV episode,” Newton said.
“This footage is meant to be used sparingly for game-specific moments like pre-game warm-ups, half-time team talks and some post-match celebrations or post-mortems.”
Newton pointed out that video access to the dressing rooms was a privilege not afforded to other codes by their players.
“The biggest sports in the world don’t have cameras prying into the team dressing rooms, so the access our players give broadcasters is unique,” he said.
“I’ve never seen Cristiano Ronaldo or Tom Brady repeatedly getting in and out of their jocks live on TV.”
Roosters coach Trent Robinson shared a similar sentiment earlier this week while revealing he had discussed the matter with Radley.
“We discussed it, it’s unfortunate, [but] I’ve also seen the guy do 1000 things right,” Robinson said on Thursday.
“The dressing room is an interesting thing. There’s a red light (on the camera) but the red light is always on now.
“It’s in the sanctity of our dressing room, and the filtering of that at the other end should be thought about that as well, (including) naked guys walking past.
“It’s great access, we all want to see in a dressing room before a game, but we also need to look at what stuff we put out there… there’s a responsibility on the other end to know there’s not always stuff you can show to the general public that goes on from the dressing room.
“There’s nothing bad, there’s just different things that shouldn’t be shown.”
– With 7NEWS
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