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Mullen claims betrayal by non-NRL physio

NZN 7/06/2017

Banned NRL player Jarrod Mullen claims he was betrayed by a physiotherapist outside of the Newcastle club before he tested positive to steroids.

Mullen, 30, was suspended for four years under the NRL's anti-doping policy this year after he tested positive to Drostanolone.

However the former Newcastle captain claimed he was told by a physio he had known for 10 years that he was administering amino acids for his problematic hamstring.

It mattered little anyway, as Mullen re-tore the hamstring weeks later before testing positive.

"I could've sat back and collected my money for the next three years and kept tearing the hamstring and not doing anything about it," Mullen told the Seven Network.

"I trusted the bloke - I'd known him for 10 years.

"He tossed up an amino acid injection to help with the healing."

But Mullen claimed at no point did he believe the treatment involved anything illegal.

"If I was intentionally going out there to improve myself to get bigger, faster strong, I would have copped four years," he said.

Mullen was banned under the ASADA code in May, but could have had a chance of having the ban reduced to two years had he named the physio.

At the time he declined, a decision he indicated he may now regret.

"In hindsight I should have," he said.

"It's ruined my life pretty much."

Mullen played 211 matches for the Knights after his debut in 2005.

He was once tipped to be the next Andrew Johns, having made his State of Origin debut for NSW at age 20 in 2007.

However he never returned to the Origin arena, his career highlight coming in 2013 as he guided the Knights to within one week of the NRL grand final.

But given his age, his career is now all but certainly over.

An emotional Mullen also hoped his positive test would serve as a warning to other players who sought treatment outside their clubs.

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