10 Jun 2010

NRL judge defends controversial decision

10:40 am on 10 June 2010

The National Rugby League's judiciary chairman Paul Conlon has defended the panel's controversial decision to clear Jarryd Hayne for a headbutt on his State of Origin opposite number Billy Slater in an NRL match last weekend.

There's been a mountain of criticism since Tuesday's decision, which left Hayne free to play in next week's second State of Origin match. But Conlon, a New South Wales District court judge, says he agreed with the verdict, explaining the parameters under which the panel should make a decision.

He did disagree though with last week's decision to clear Jonathan Thurston of a detrimental conduct charge for swearing at a referee.