AAP Rugby

Tigers’ Leilua faces 4-6 weeks NRL ban

By AAP Newswire

Wests Tigers veteran Joey Leilua is facing an NRL ban of up to six weeks after being charged for an off-the-ball high shot on Penrith fullback Dylan Edwards.

Leilua was issued a grade three dangerous contact charge after his frustrations boiled over in the Tigers' 19-12 loss to the Panthers.

The big centre will cop a four-week suspension with an early plea but six games if he unsuccessfully contests the charge at a judiciary hearing.

He could seek a downgrade to grade two at the judiciary, which would reduce his ban to two weeks.

Leilua finished Saturday's fiery clash in the sin bin for his hit on Edwards.

The Tigers centre lost his cool after his brother and teammate Luciano was taken off the ground on a medicab in the second half, on the receiving end of a 60th-minute high shot from Api Koroisau.

A fired up Leilua then took exception to Koroisau checking on his brother's welfare as he was taken off the field.

Koroisau was penalised by the bunker for the shot on a falling Luciano Leilua but was not charged on Sunday.

"Obviously emotions were high after Luciano went down," Koroisau said.

"I just went for a tackle, it was pretty unfortunate.

"I felt pretty bad for him. I will try to reach out to him and see if he is alright.

"He (Joey Leilua) was pretty fired up after what happened...as any brother would be, nothing against Joey."

Joey Leilua was at the centre of several flashpoints in the last 20 minutes of the encounter.

He gave away a penalty in the lead-up to Nathan Cleary's match-defining field goal, before his shot on Edwards who didn't even go close to the ball as it was kicked through.

"I am good, it happens in footy. I got a little cheapie over there but it's alright, he didn't hurt me too much," Edwards said of the incident.

"He was a bit cranky with me but it happens on the footy field."

Tigers coach Michael Maguire was not as forgiving.

"He was emotional, gave away penalties. We just can't do that," he said of Joey Leilua.

Meanwhile, Tigers interchange forward Sam McIntyre has been cleared of facial fractures after being taken to hospital following a head clash that left him heavily concussed on Saturday.

McIntyre is expected to miss next round's showdown with South Sydney.