South Sydney fullback Greg Inglis is facing a five-match suspension while seven other players were charged by the NRL match review committee on Monday after a dramatic Round 20 of the NRL Telstra Premiership.
Inglis, Penrith’s Travis Burns, Brisbane’s Ben Te’o and Josh Hoffman, St George Illawarra’s Dan Hunt, Josh Miller and Trent Merrin and Canberra’s Josh Papalii are all facing charges from the weekend’s games.
Inglis was charged with a grade four dangerous contact – shoulder, for his tackle on Dragons forward Dean Young in the 33rd minute of the Rabbitohs’ 36-14 victory at ANZ Stadium on Saturday night.
The charge means Inglis could miss up to five matches, which is a massive blow to South Sydney’s aspirations to finish in the top four.
The Queensland and Australia representative will miss four games with an early plea, but could miss up to five matches if he fights the charge at the NRL judiciary and loses.
South Sydney may also elect to dispute the grading which could result in a reduced suspension if successful at the NRL judiciary.
If Inglis is suspended for an extended period, Nathan Merritt would be the obvious choice to fill the void at fullback for South Sydney, after the try-scoring machine bagged another hat-trick at the weekend. Merritt showed his potential at fullback last season scoring 10 tries in just three games, including an incredible five tries in one match.
Penrith Panthers five-eighth Travis Burns is set to miss the rest of the season after he was charged for two separate incidents in his side’s 28-16 victory over the Roosters at Centrebet Stadium on Sunday afternoon.
Burns was charged with a grade two dangerous contact – unnessary arm/shoulder pressure for his chicken-wing style tackle on Roosters forward Mose Masoe and was also slapped with a grade three high tackle – intentional, for his tackle on Roosters forward Martin Kennedy.
Burns was sent-off for his shot on Kennedy, becoming only the second player this season to be given his marching orders after Dragons forward Matt Prior was sent from the field in Round 9.
Burns is facing up to 12 weeks for the high shot on Kennedy and four weeks for the tackle on Masoe.
If the Panthers take the early plea to both charges, the five-eighth would be ruled out for a total of 12 matches.
Brisbane’s Ben Te’o is facing a week suspension after he was charged with a grade two careless high-tackle on Titans forward Luke Bailey.
Teammate Josh Hoffman is facing a two-week suspension for a tackle on Bailey after he was slapped with a grade two dangerous contact charge. The Broncos fullback would however only miss one match with an early plea.
Dragons trio Hunt, Merrin and Miller have all been charged with grade one careless high tackles, but will be free to play at the weekend.
Canberra’s Josh Papalii was charged with a grade one dangerous contact with a kicker, but will be free to play if he takes the early guilty plea.