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Fittler says Pangai’s issue with control, not discipline

“The problem with him is not discipline, it is control,” Fittler said.

“And when he shot out of the line the other day twice against St George Illawarra, that is not discipline, that is control.

“Whatever he is trying to do he is trying to do on his own, not working with his teammates.

“The one thing we [NSW] did do really well last year was that our control was good and our discipline was good. We didn’t give many penalties away.

“The way the game is played at the moment, if you’re not being aggressive towards a halfback, you are going to lose.

“It’s the ones that don’t have the control to pull out and the ones that have bad timing. A lot of that has to do with control.”

Pangai jnr is understood to have flown to Canberra on Friday to be with his father, also Tevita, who underwent heart surgery just hours before the Roosters clash.

He runs the risk of missing three games should he fight the charge and lose.

Cronk was diplomatic after the game, with TV cameras capturing a giant mysterious bruise in the middle of his back while he was worked on by club medicos at half-time in the sheds.

“It’s part of the job description, and playing your role as a ball player, you have to go into the line and create some space for the outside players,” Cronk said.

If it is late, high, aggressive contact, wipe it out of the game completely.

Cooper Cronk

“Sometimes they [hit you late] so halves don’t go into the line and create space. But I’ll keep doing that for my team as long as guys can take advantage of it on the outside or inside.

“If it is late, high, aggressive contact, wipe it out of the game completely.

“In terms of whether it is fair or not, I am not talking about that individual [hit], I am talking generically.

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“If you want to talk about the individual one, I think there is a question mark that it could have been 10 in the bin.”

His Roosters teammates on Friday welcomed the match review committee’s findings, with captain Boyd Cordner declaring: “The last thing you want to see is Cooper Cronk being sidelined again with another broken shoulder blade.”

“It was late and that’s why we have the judiciary in place,” Cordner said.

“It’s the right call. It’s a big talking point in our game. The last thing you want to see is Cooper Cronk being sidelined again with another broken shoulder blade.

“It probably wasn’t intentional but at the same time we have to look after player welfare and I think they got the call right at the end of the day.

“It’s hard as players we get told to put pressure on.

“When you have their key playmakers standing in front of you, you want to take away as much time as possible. It is hard but at the same time there has to be a duty of care. The game is trending in that direction where player welfare is first and foremost. That showed in the decision in Tevita getting two or three weeks.”

Christian covers rugby league for The Sydney Morning Herald.

Adrian Proszenko is the Chief Rugby League Reporter for the Sydney Morning Herald.

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