De Belin legal action held over until next Thursday

St George Illawarra Dragons star Jack de Belin’s legal challenge to the NRL’s planned “no-fault stand down” policy has been held over until next Thursday.

The ARL Commission approved the policy against players facing criminal charges that prevents them from taking to the field until legal matters are finalised. They are permitted to continue training with their club.

The rule has, however, not yet been formalised so the Federal Court adjourned the hearing.

Alan Sullivan, QC, who was representing the ARL Commission in court, said there was “nothing to stop him playing rugby league from now and the time the rule is enacted”.

He said de Belin was not technically suspended as it stands but the new rule was expected to be up and running before the Telstra Premiership gets underway with next Thursday night’s Storm-Broncos clash in Melbourne.

NRL CEO Todd Greenberg reiterated the timeline for the ARLC’s drafting of the no-fault stand down policy in a brief media address at the game’s season launch on Thursday night.

“It’s nothing that we hadn’t expected and given it’s a matter before the courts I can’t say much more,” Greenberg said of de Belin’s court action at Bondi Beach.

“It was always the decision of the commission to change the policy.

“They need to draft the rule and that’s exactly the timeframe we’re on, that will happen next week.”