Former Rugby League star Mark Geyer has thrown his support behind Dragons playmaker Corey Norman following his involvement in a Sydney street fight last month.
As reported by Fox Sports‘ Mark St John, the three-time Kangaroos representative used his platform on Triple M to lambast the league for their heavy handed punishment.
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Norman was handed a two game suspension as well as a $20,000 fine by the NRL after putting the league in disrepute.
Although one game of his ban has been suspended for 12 months, the controversial Dragon has indicated that he will be appealing the decision.
Fox Sports’ James Hooper stated on Monday afternoon that the 30-year-old has employed the services of Rugby League Players Association lawyer Adrian Turner to help overturn the ban.
Norman’s decision to plead for reconsideration was vehemently supported by Geyer on Monday.
“Very harsh and if he didn’t appeal it he is crazy,” Geyer said on Triple M.
“I would have done the same thing. I’m getting hot under the collar.
“I am the first to admit that Corey Norman’s reputation does precede him, but a $20,000 fine and a two-game suspension for basically sticking up for a mate, come on.
“That is way over the top. I worry about these sanctions that we are getting a little bit carried away with them.”
According to the star five-eighth, his involvement in the Cronulla base street scrap came after a member of the public racial abused former Broncos player James Segeyaro.
Norman’s statement was corroborated by the Papua New Guinean international on his Instagram account last month.
With these claims of racial vilification and threats of mutilation by a weapon, Geyer was of the opinion that most men would have followed Norman’s lead.
“If I am feeling threatened about my own safety it doesn’t matter if I am a footballer or a bloke walking down the street, I’m going to do something about it.
“I think Corey Norman did that and he heard what they said about James Segeyaro and he went to his mate’s aid.
“For the life of me I think every man listening to this chat would do the same thing.
“I’ve loved the transition with V’landys and Abdo, but this one is going a little bit over the top. He hasn’t brought the game into disrepute. He has defended his mate.”
The 53-year-old co-host of ‘The Grill Team’ also claimed that although players needed to ‘toe the line’ when mingling with the public, expecting them to leave their mates unsupported was ludicrous.
“I agree on the crackdown on off-field indiscretions, but we can’t lock our footballers up 24/7 and expect them to have no life away from footy,” Geyer said.
“This incident from James Segeyaro is a pure case of self-defence if ever I have seen it. If you can’t defend yourself and a mate while you are threatened in an attack well when can you?
“Obviously they were targeted by a group who clearly wanted some trouble. They targeted the duo as well as outnumbering them.”
If Norman’s ban is upheld, he will miss St. George-Illawarra’s round one clash against Cronulla on Sunday, March 14.