NRL needs to protect playmakers: Hunt

Brisbane halfback Ben Hunt has joined the calls for a crackdown on late hits on NRL playmakers.

Hunt says halves accept that they’ll cop some tough tackles when they take the ball to the defensive line but he feels there is another line being crossed by some defenders.

“Us halves get taught to play right near the line and when you do that you have to accept that you are going to get hit a bit,” said Hunt on Tuesday.

“But it’s those ones where you pass the ball a bit early or a player comes in and cleans you up late is something they really have to clean up I believe.”

North Queensland coach Paul Green issued a “please explain” to the NRL after his Test playmaker Johnathan Thurston complained publicly about treatment he copped after kicks in the Cowboys’ loss to South Sydney last week.

Gold Coast coach Neil Henry backed Green’s call for more protection for playmakers after his halfback Aidan Sezer suffered a shoulder injury following a hit from Bulldogs giant Sam Kasiano on Sunday.

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