Parramatta Eels have named Dylan Brown in their team line-up for the King’s Birthday clash against Canterbury Bulldogs, however, the NRL will have the final say over whether he will be allowed to play. Brown has recently been charged with five counts of sexual touching without consent over an alleged incident in a Double Bay pub on Saturday night. The NRL’s no-fault stand-down policy states that players charged with an offence with a maximum prison term of 11 years or more are automatically suspended until their court proceedings come to a conclusion. Although Brown’s charges do not meet that threshold, NRL CEO Andrew Abdo still has the discretion to remove him from the game.
The governing body is yet to make an official statement regarding the issue. The NRL is expected to make a decision as soon as they have all the available information, which could be on Tuesday night or after the court mention on Wednesday. In the event that Brown is ruled ineligible, Daejarn Asi may make his Parramatta debut.
Brown has been the Eels‘ best player this season, averaging 145 running meters per game and a tackle efficiency of 93 percent. Parramatta has had a slow start to the season, and Brown’s absence would be another blow to the team who are currently in 12th place. Some fans had considered moving Clint Gutherson from fullback to five-eighth but the move was scuppered by the unavailability of the injured Waqa Blake.
The forwards will receive a boost from the return of Reagan Campbell-Gillard, who will make his earlier-than-expected return from a groin injury suffered in round eight. Canterbury Bulldogs have named Reed Mahoney in the squad despite being concussed in the loss to the Roosters.
Some notable outs in round 15 of the NRL include Titans forward David Fifita (concussion), Souths trio Latrell Mitchell (calf), Jai Arrow (ankle), and Cameron Murray (groin), as well as Dragon Jack De Belin.