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NRL clubs renew talks with Grant

AAP logoAAP 5/12/2016 Laine Clark

Queensland Rugby League boss Peter Betros believes "common sense will prevail" and NRL clubs will abandon plans to oust Australian Rugby League Commission chairman John Grant on December 20.

Betros revealed had had spoken to NRL clubs campaigning for Grant's retention and been encouraged by the response ahead of this month's emergency general meeting.

There were more good portents on Monday night.

Disgruntled NRL clubs announced that they had returned to the negotiation table with Grant over a funding stoush.

"I hope that (December 20) meeting is cancelled and I believe it will be," Betros told AAP.

"I believe common sense will prevail.

"I am encouraging the warring parties to sit down and settle their differences and find some amicable agreement and not tear ourselves apart.

"Chopping John's head off doesn't solve any problems, simple as that."

Funding talks had been postponed indefinitely just last week after clubs called for the emergency meeting in a bid to get rid of Grant.

The ARLC boss had been desperate for clubs to return to the negotiation table after falling out with them by reneging on a 12 month old funding agreement.

He recently withdrew a memorandum of understanding which pledged an extra $100 million per year to clubs from 2018.

"Representatives of the clubs and the ARLC met today and agreed to continue discussions to resolve the current impasse," NRL clubs said in a statement on Monday night.

Betros now hoped renewed talks would also lead to the December 20 meeting being abandoned.

Clubs require a minimum 14 votes from the game's 26 shareholders - the 16 clubs, NSWRL, eight commissioners and the QRL represented by Betros - to remove Grant at the meeting.

Fourteen clubs, excluding the NRL-owned Gold Coast and Newcastle, signed a letter to the ARLC backing the emergency meeting.

Betros said NRL clubs had been perceived as "greedy" at grassroots level over their stance.

"I don't know if it is personal," Betros said.

"I just think this desire to control the money is clouding some clubs' view.

"I think the clubs are just looking for someone who is more attuned to their desires.

"It's the club ideology of us first and everyone else comes later.

"I mix in league circles a lot below the NRL level and there is a great perception that the clubs are being very greedy and selfish."

Betros believed the most important people in the game had been overlooked in the disgruntled NRL clubs' funding stoush - grass roots footy.

Grant reneged on the funding promise in a bid to renew a grassroots footy focus after citing a decline in participation.

"I acknowledge that the NRL brings in the funding for the game but there is an enormous amount of grass roots football that comes underneath," Betros said.

"It is responsible for the next players coming through - it's got to be protected."

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