James Tedesco’s dad slams NRL for not doing enough to protect its star players



  • THE father of injured Wests Tigers star James Tedesco has slammed the NRL for failing to do enough to protect its stars, declaring: “Nobody goes to watch Ryan James, they go to watch James Tedesco”.

    John Tedesco said it had only been a matter of time before his son suffered serious injury after being repeatedly attacked around the head this season.

    He also revealed his son feared he would be suspended for making contact with a referee during the clash with the Gold Coast, before he had his jaw broken by James.

    To add insult to Tedesco’s injury, Titans forward James will front the judiciary on Wednesday night in an attempt to avoid suspension after pleading not guilty to his grade two careless high tackle charge.

    John Tedesco confirmed the fullback underwent surgery at a Sydney private hospital last night and had a plate inserted into his jaw by the same surgeon who repaired the jaw of St George Illawarra ace Josh Dugan.

    “It’s disappointing because we should be doing more to protect the star players, and that’s why people go to the game — nobody goes to watch Ryan James, they go to watch James Tedesco,’’ John told The Daily Telegraph.

    “That’s not the first time he’s been hit in the head. You only had to look back to Origin when he was caught short of the try line, and then (Greg) Inglis comes in over the top with an elbow to the face.

    “These players claim it’s an accident, but they need to be more careful.

    “Corey Parker got one week for hitting James in Origin, and he had a clean record for 15 years. Ryan James only gets one week for breaking his jaw.

    “James actually said to me he was worried he would be in trouble for touching a referee earlier in the game. Why should players have to worry about that? I could see he wasn’t himself.’’

    It’s understood James sent Tedesco a text message to apologise late Sunday.

    Gold Coast officials confirmed they will fight the charge at the NRL judiciary.

    Despite being sidelined the remainder of the season, John Tedesco said his son was in wonderful spirits.

    “His parents are more down than him,’’ John said.

    Depending on his recovery, Tedesco’s next game could be the Prime Minister’s XIII against Papua New Guinea at the end of next month.

    Kangaroos coach Mal Meninga will also oversee the PM’s XIII, and should he give Tedesco the nod, will get a quick idea if he is ready for the Four Nations tour.

    Had he not broken his jaw, Tedesco would have been right in the mix for a spot in the extended squad to play against Scotland, England and New Zealand.

    While Tedesco will be crushed by not being part of the Tigers push to the finals, which continues with a road trip to Penrith on Friday night, being denied a potential Kangaroos jumper could also hurt him financially.

    Players stand to earn $50,000 if Australia wins the Four Nations, collect $40,000 if they finish runners-up, and $30,000 if they don’t reach the final.

    CHRISTIAN NICOLUSSI, The Daily Telegraph



  • Its okay everybody Ryan has apologised.
    Meanwhile he saying it’s not his fault at all by fighting a one week charge.
    What an insult.



  • John will need to get used to seeing his son targeted most weeks… Every opposition Forward Pack will be looking to knock him out of the game his whole career.

    Been happening for years to 6’s & 7’s… Now its the Fullbacks turn to enjoy the fun.



  • I understand that his dad is rightfully upset, but arguments like “Teddy’s a star, Ryan James is not” don’t help. Firstly, people DO go to watch Ryan James play. Secondly, we don’t want double standards for our high profile players.



  • As I said before, accidental or intentional, the bottom line is the onus is on the defender not to make contact with the head. Its pretty simple really and the NRL has to protect its players, a week ban will not change the way James plays the game,a season ending ban would make him think twice



  • @supercoach:

    As I said before, accidental or intentional, the bottom line is the onus is on the defender not to make contact with the head. Its pretty simple really and the NRL has to protect its players, a week ban will not change the way James plays the game,a season ending ban would make him think twice

    A season ending ban wont have any effect in the way James thinks. He was doing his job and obviously succeeded in the eyes of his employers.

    The only time James is going to adjust how hard he attempts to play, is when he gets the tap on the shoulder from his Coach to tone it down.

    Cant see that happening any time soon.



  • @supercoach:

    As I said before, accidental or intentional, the bottom line is the onus is on the defender not to make contact with the head. Its pretty simple really and the NRL has to protect its players, a week ban will not change the way James plays the game,a season ending ban would make him think twice

    I agree, a one week ban is a joke. And if he gets off? Sooner or later the NRL will take notice.



  • There has been an endless stream of attacks on him, trying to rub Tedesco out of the game. While James’ tackle finally did the job, I don’t think it was even near the worst of them. Punishment should be based on the danger of injury, not the achievement of injury.

    And this goes for any player, not just Tedesco!



  • His first quote seriously took away any sympathy i had for him. I think the sons notariety has gone to dad’s head.



  • His fathers actually a nice bloke…and has a point.


  • Banned

    Ryan James has been a mug since day one, he has tried to clean up his image this year but he has gone back to his dirty ways

    He can apparently apologise all he likes, he is laughing behind closed doors



  • A bit of a pigheaded comment there about who people go to watch play. There’s 17 players in a side, John.

    Tedesco is targeted though, seems to cop his fair share of high shots and while legitimate heavy shots are fine (he should expect this sort of intimidation as one of the smallest blokes on the field,) anything that is illegal should be heavily penalised. So many players are at the wrong end of grubby tactics like this.



  • Words from an emotional dad - understand fully. Sometimes its important for the NRL to hear that perspective - they aren’t just commodities to families. Must be terribly difficult to see your sons jaw smashed while the other bloke is a chance of getting off.
    Not sure it’s a wise move by Ryan should have counted himself lucky with the one week.



  • He is a slippery guy to tackle and gets low stumbles a lot of the time when stepping.
    I’m not condoning Ryan James but Tedescos running style puts him in these positions to get hit.



  • @Masterton:

    I understand that his dad is rightfully upset, but arguments like “Teddy’s a star, Ryan James is not” don’t help. Firstly, people DO go to watch Ryan James play. Secondly, we don’t want double standards for our high profile players.

    Who is Ryan James?


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