Sat August 11, 2012 7:11am
THE ARL Commission has had preliminary discussions over the introduction of a father-son rule as part of its attempt to clear up the eligibility guidelines surrounding State of Origin.
And further changes to the rules could result in players being eligible to play for Australia but ineligible to play for NSW or Queensland, as officials look to protect the integrity of Origin.
The commission is reviewing the eligibility rules following the controversy that surrounded New Zealand-born Sam Kasiano's potential selection for the Maroons.
Commission chairman John Grant told The Weekend Aust-ralian that as part of the review, officials were seeking to define exactly what Origin meant to players and fans.
"We're doing some research work at the moment to understand what Origin means and what part it plays in the minds of our fans in order to back up some of the decisions around criteria by which players might be picked for a State of Origin side," Grant said.
"We had that Kasiano issue. What it identified is what are we really trying to achieve here - what is State of Origin about? What has happened over times is that the state versus state thing is being watered down."
It is understood officials are considering a number of alterations to existing guidelines to clarify Origin eligibility. One of those could be the introduction of a father-son rule.
The AFL has a father-son rule that allows clubs preferential access to the sons of players who have made major contributions to the team in the past.
While the rule is unlikely to have immediate impact in rugby league, the growing strength of the Melbourne Storm and the possible inclusion of a Perth side could make it more relevant.
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