NRL players banned from Mother's Day visit

Matt Encarnacion
Sydney Roosters star and reigning Dally M medalist will not be able to see mum Rosemary on Sunday

NRL players have been told they won't be granted an exemption to visit family on Mother's Day as part of the league's strict biosecurity protocols.

Coaches will also have to wait until Monday to resume contact sessions with full squads under the latest advice from the game's medical experts.

It was hoped the NRL lockdown would be temporarily lifted on Sunday, allowing players not living with their parents to celebrate with their mums.

However, with the league determined to minimise risk of COVID-19 infection prior to its May 28 restart, those hopes were dashed in an email to clubs on Thursday.

"After further consultation with our medical experts, the NRL has determined that Mother's Day is not an acceptable circumstance for players or club officials to leave their residence," the email, obtained by Nine newspapers, read.

"The protocols cannot be periodic if we are to achieve our objective.

"It cannot be subject to change because of personal events such as birthdays, anniversaries or occasions such as Mother's Day.

"A black or white decision is required in this instance to ensure no confusion amongst players and officials, the government and the media.

"It's unfortunate but ultimately no different to what all families faced recently over Easter. Any communication in relation to Mother's Day is to occur via telephone or video conferencing."

Sydney Roosters veteran Brett Morris accepted the decision, saying players can still communicate with their mothers from afar.

"At the end of the day, we've all got phones. They've all got cameras on them. You can FaceTime," he said.

"She doesn't need to see us face-to-face to know how much we love her."

Any plans by clubs to ramp up training sessions to full contact on Saturday morning have also been scuppered.

Teams have been limited to groups of 10 this week under Level B of the national principles for the resumption of sport set by the federal government last week.

Level C, for professional sporting organisations, is free of any restrictions and will not start before Monday.