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THE NRL is facing another major showdown with the 16 clubs.

Participation agreements that were agreed to last December and supposed to be signed and submitted by June 30 have still not been received at Moore Park headquarters.
The latest stand-off and the refusal of clubs to sign is all about the constitution and the make-up of the independent commission.
In an attempt to smooth the situation, the NRL sent each of the clubs a cheque for $1.15 million last week as an advanced grant and a message of goodwill.
It hasn’t worked.
The clubs will not sign until they get a say on the independent commission.
Even if three or four clubs break away and sign, there are almost a dozen who are standing firm and won’t budge.
The majority of the clubs believe more rugby league experience is needed on the commission.
People like John Quayle, Harvey Norman boss Katie Page or George Peponis.
They point out that despite last year’s $1 billion-plus broadcasting agreement, the game is still facing huge financial challenges.
Under the commission’s watch, millions of dollars have been wasted on outrageously high executive salaries, the bunker and other areas of overspending.
NRL boss John Grant announced just before Christmas last year that all the clubs had agreed to their new funding model. He was wrong.
To make things worse, he is now on a European holiday as this latest conflict emerges.
It also makes things even more difficult for players coming off contract because no one knows the size of future salary caps until the funding issue is settled.



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