Phil Gould previews the NRL season
Phil Gould discusses what we can expect from the season openers and also tackles the contentious issue of concussion.PT7M16S http://www.canberratimes.com.au/action/externalEmbeddedPlayer?id=d-341xg 620 349 March 4, 2014
One Wests Tigers player was described as suffering a "serious" infection and was quarantined indefinitely while another was being monitored and had received a heavy dose of antibiotics on Wednesday night as the club waited on the results of staphlycoccus tests.
Skipper Robbie Farah, Aaron Woods, Jack Buchanan and Pat Richards were all reported in the media to have suffered from boils which Wests Tigers officials said was a form of staph but there were concerns for two squad members who chief executive Grant Mayer refused to identify.
"There is one player in particular who has a serious infection but he has been quarantined," Mayer said. "There is a second player we are watching very carefully and he's been given the correct medication and is likely to play. The remaining players will take the field [against St George Illawarra] on Sunday."
Wests Tigers have been struck down by a series of infections just days out from their NRL season opener against St George Illawarra. Photo: Jonathan Ng
Mayer stressed the medical advice he had received was there was no risk of the players who had been infected spreading the infection to their opponents. Wests Tigers are waiting to receive the results of the tests the players took on Thursday.
"Our advice is as long as we have caught it in time there is absolutely no risk of any player passing it on to another [player]. It is of paramount importance for us to ensure the players are safe and no further risk of infection can happen."
The club was not sure where, or how, the outbreak occurred. However, players from Cronulla – who the Tigers played in a pre-season trial had also suffered infections. Five Wests Tigers players have been affected and it was believed the fact the team had a pre-season break last Wednesday may have helped prevent more from being infected.
One concern for the five players who have been affected by the infection was they would not have trained in five days by kick-off and it remains to be seen how that would affect their performance against the Dragons.
Mayer emphasised the players who took the field would pose no risk to anyone.