Gold Coast Titans' Bryce Cartwright has right to 'medical freedom' - wife

Prime Minister Scott Morrison says NRL players refusing a flu shot should not be allowed to train and play when the competition resumes on May 28.

Gold Coast Titans star Bryce Cartwright, who has previously spoken about being an anti-vaxxer, caused a stir this week when he refused the mandatory jab. His decision has been met with a wave of disapproval from fans and it remains unclear whether he will be able to play in 2020.

NRL officials have been warned that catching the coronavirus is more likely for someone who has the regular flu, and Morrison says anyone willing to put others in danger should not be suiting up.

"No jab no play," Morrison told 2GB. "When I was social services minister I started the 'no jab no play' rule into the childcare facilities and I think the same rule applies [in the NRL]."

On Tuesday evening, Cartwright's wife, Shanelle, took to Instagram to hit out at those criticising her husband's decision.

"People have the freedom to say what they like, just like we have the freedom to choose which medical procedures we undergo, but ultimately the proof is in the pudding," she wrote. "Our kids are a picture of health. They've never had an ear infection, never had a chest infection or bronchitis, they have no neuro-developmental disorders or auto-immune disorders and are rarely ever sick.

"They've never had a round of antibiotics are any other pharmaceutical drug for that matter (yes, including Panadol). As parents we do our best with what we know, for some, health comes in a needle and it works for them. What we're doing is going seemingly well seeing the state of their health. So if it's not clear, we're not anti-anything. We stand for medical freedom and the right to choose."

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People have the freedom to say what they like, just like we have the freedom to choose which medical procedures we undergo, but ultimately the proof is in the pudding. Our kids are a picture of health. They've never had an ear infection, never had a chest infection or bronchitis, they have no neuro-developmental disorders or auto-immune disorders and are rarely ever sick. They've never had a round of antibiotics are any other pharmaceutical drug for that matter (yes, including Panadol). As parents we do our best with what we know, for some, health comes in a needle and it works for them. What we're doing is going seemingly well seeing the state of their health. So if it's not clear, we're not anti anything. We stand for medical freedom and the right to choose. Anyway, that's my piece. Stay gravy peeps✌🏽

A post shared by S H A N E L L E (@shanellept_) on

Rugby League icon Mark Geyer has also weighed in on the debate, agreeing with Morrison in saying Cartwright should not be allowed to train and play games if he refuses to take the shot.

"I respect he and his partner's decision for his family, if they don't want to get the kids vaccinated that's fine," Geyer told Triple M on Wednesday. "But I'm sorry, no flu shot, no play. To play footy, man, you've got to have a flu shot brother."