Slater opens up on player workload

Speaking to the media on Tuesday, Storm fullback Billy Slater weighed into the long running debate over player welfare and the length of rugby league's season.

With more matches being played than ever before by the game's elite players Slater believes change needs to occur to accommodate the vast exhibition, premiership and representative schedules.

"Yeah I think there certainly should be something done," Slater said when asked about player workload in a season. 

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"It's such a long season especially for the representative players, if they want players involved in All Stars, Nines, State of Origin and Four Nations.

"I think the season is probably a little bit too long in itself and then you add all those other extras on its a really long season."

As a result of a shoulder injury Slater missed Australia's Four Nations campaign and enjoyed an earlier than usual break heading into the new season and is feeling the benefits. The Storm number one understands the discussion is a complex one, however he is adamant change needs to be explored in the future for the best interests of player welfare.

"My decision was made for me with my shoulder, looking back now its a blessing in disguise for the rest of my body just having that break and getting a bit of training done," Slater said.

"Usually we're (representative players) coming back mid-January and you're sort of chasing your tail to get fit for the season.

"Obviously with the television rights we're bound into contracts where we can't really reduce the amount of games we are playing at the moment.

"I think in the next deal it is something we really need to look at. You want the elite players out there all the time."