Sad reason NRL star never returned
Boyd Cordner's repeated head knocks are a huge concern among NRL fans but the Roosters showed as much concern for their captain's mental health as his physical wellbeing on the weekend.
Cordner has suffered multiple concussions and missed plenty of matches in recent months and there were more fears after another blow during Saturday's 42-12 win over Newcastle.
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The NSW and Kangaroos skipper was checked out on the field and in the sheds but passed his Head Injury Assessment (HIA).
The Roosters said Cordner suffered a head knock, not a concussion, but they still kept him off the field for the remainder of the game.
It had been a tough lead-in to the Knights clash for the gun second-rower, whose 19-year-old cousin Joel Dark died during the week after suffering a serious head injury while making his first grade debut for Newcastle Central two Sundays ago.
Emergency brain surgery couldn't save the teenager and on the weekend, the Roosters all wore black armbands in his honour.
Channel 9's Danny Weidler revealed concerns about Cordner's emotional state after he was pulled from the field for his HIA is what convinced the Roosters medical staff not to let him continue playing.
"He came off the field and passed his test. After he passed his test and the doctor was there with him at the Roosters, Boyd began to talk about his family situation - which we feel for him about and we're very sad about what happened," Weidler said on the Big Sports Breakfast.
"He began to discuss his family with the doctor.
"The doctor saw that as a sign that Boyd wasn't ready to go back out there, that it was better for him not to keep on playing football and that his mind, while it wasn't impacted by that head knock, he just thought for his mental health and his wellbeing, it wasn't the right thing for him to do to go back out and play.
"I found that really interesting.
"And that the Roosters doctor showed that level of compassion and that level of understanding and that level of care is a credit to him and also to the club and to (coach) Trent Robinson for probably listening to the doctor's advice and saying, 'Yep, let's keep him off'."
Cordner only knows one way to play and shows no concern for self-preservation when putting his body on the line for his teammates.
While it's an admirable trait in any footy player, NSW Origin coach Brad Fittler says it makes Cordner his own worst enemy.
"The way he plays the game is just 100 miles an hour, no self-preservation," Fittler told Channel 9.
"They are the players that we bronze at some stage and put them in front of stadiums.
"I think sometimes Boyd has to be told what to do. His first instinct would be to do what was best for the team and push through pain.
"Boyd will most probably be his number one enemy at stages."
Originally published as Sad reason NRL star never returned