St George Illawarra captain Ben Hunt has lashed out at the NRL over their attempt to show fatigue has not increased in the game, claiming it is nothing new for head office to ignore the views of players.
The NRL released data this week they argued showed players were no more fatigued now than they were two years ago under the old rules.
The release of the figures was seen as a bid to distance the game's fatigue factor from the avalanche of high shots, with around 10 times as many charges per round for such incidents this year compared to 2017.
But the NRL's stance was met with a strong rebuke from the players' union, who have been constant in their belief players are more fatigued in games now than in previous years.
Hunt has already made his feelings known, claiming in April the game had gone "too far" and warning the rule changes were causing injuries.
When asked on Friday night if the voices of players were being ignored, the 31-year-old was adamant that was the case.
"That's nothing new," he said.
"They always seem to make up their mind and go with it.
"It is a bit frustrating. We are the ones out there playing the game and doing our best.
"It seems like every year they come in halfway through the year and try to change things on us.
"It does make it a bit tough but we've just got to get on with it."
Hunt is not on the Rugby League Players' Association board, but is one of the game's most senior players and said he supported the RLPA's position.
The NRL's figures showed handling errors had remained steady in the past three seasons, which head office claimed showed fatigue was not an issue.
They also argued ball-in-play time had dropped from last season, and was only up one minute from before the introduction of set restarts, and that more tries had provided more stoppages.
But Hunt is firmly of the belief that fatigue is causing foul play in defence.
"It's definitely an issue," he said.
"The guys who are making the high shots and are fatigued have only played 40 minutes or something like that.
"You can say it's lazy or whatnot, but they are just tired and doing their best to make the tackle."
Hunt supported Sydney Roosters coach Trent Robinson's theory that fatigue is not game long but comes to the fore during long stints in defence with the set-restart rule.
"It's definitely in waves," Hunt said.
"You get to tackle three or four and then there is another six again, and then a drop out or something like that.
"You're defending for long periods of time.
"If you're in a cycle for 10 or 12 minutes and the ball just stays in play, that's where the big boys are pretty tired."