Armie has made his debut as a Kangaroo this year and has been the target of the NRL’s biggest feud in years.
Key points:The Kangaroos are trying to avoid another season where they lose their premiershipThe Kangaroo captain says he wants to spend his time with his familyArmie has had a difficult year as a player, including a knee injuryThe NRL’s disciplinary department has been at loggerheads with the Kangarooes since last season’s grand final loss to the Sea EaglesIn what is shaping up to be an increasingly bitter feud, the Kangaroo’s captain has publicly slammed the NRL for not supporting his efforts to win back his job.
Key Points:Rookie Kangaroocers Armie and Jake Granville are the latest Kangaroo players to make headlinesThe Kangaros’ season has been one of the most disappointing in their history with three consecutive defeats.
The Kangas have been in the top six in the NRL ladder for two seasons now, but have only won one of their past three games.
But, in the absence of a grand final, the club is taking its time getting back to winning ways.
It’s a challenge they’re determined to overcome and they’ve made it clear they want to spend more time with their families, coach Nathan Buckley said.
“I’ve said all along we want to have more time to be around family and friends,” Buckley said this week.
“And I’ve also said we’re looking at making sure our players have the time to relax and spend some time with them and I’m sure we’ll get a lot more support from the NRL as we go through this.”
The Kangors have lost four of their six games this season and have only managed to get back to the top four once in eight games this year.
It has been a frustrating year for the Kangos, who have only had a season-ending injury to veteran Sam Burgess in the Kangaroes’ first season.
Buckley said the Kangas were aware of the criticism their players were receiving and had taken steps to change things.
“We’ve taken steps,” he said.
“I know it’s a tough time for a lot of people, but we’ve done things that have made it a little bit easier.”
The club has had to change some of its methods, such as the return of the “Moochie Ball” to the Kangars’ dressing room.
“If you’ve got a couple of guys who get caught up in the moochie ball game you’ve lost a couple players in your squad,” Buckley added.
“So, obviously you’ve had to be a bit more judicious with it, but you’ve still got a few guys who’ve had a good couple of years out there.”
The changes were implemented in a bid to cut down on injuries.
“Injuries are part of the game,” Buckley continued.
“We’ve got to be mindful of the fact that our players are a bit different to other teams and our game is different to that of other teams, so we’ve had some players miss a game because they didn’t want to miss a day off.”
But it’s not like you’ve just gone to the doctor and said, ‘I’ve got this injury and I want to come in’.
“We have to be very careful with that and make sure that if a player is in the game we have to make sure we make the most of it.”
The NRL has been unable to find a solution to the feud since the Kangaboos lost the grand final last season, with Buckley blaming the league for not taking action.
In recent months, the NRL has received an increasing number of complaints from players and staff about the way the competition was run.
“It’s something we’ve been looking at,” Buckley told Fox Sports.
“There’s some things that we can do to try and get it right.
It’s a difficult situation, but it’s important that we do what we can to resolve it.”NRL chief executive Todd Greenberg said the league had been in touch with the NRL, Kangarool club and the Kangarrans’ management for a number of months and it had made the decision to move forward with the disciplinary process.”
As a result of the discussions, we’ve made the appropriate changes, which include the return to the ‘Mooch’ ball,” Greenberg said.
“This will allow players to play with the dignity and respect they expect from the game.”
Players will now have the opportunity to take part in their team’s matches with the ‘mooch’, a new, new ball that has a higher bounce than the original ball.
“Nathan Buckley was not available for comment.
Read more from Fox Sports