Bradford prop Bryn Hargreaves says he has been left disillusioned by the sport after announcing his retirement at the age of 26.
Hargreaves has landed a job outside of the game, and said that it was an opportunity he couldn’t turn down.
He told the Telegraph and Argus: “Being a rugby league player is not a very sustainable and secure future as it is, but then you see what happened at Bradford and you think ‘wow, the carpet can really be pulled from beneath me here’.
“We could talk all day about what’s wrong with rugby league and that affected my decision too.
“It’s a short career and we don’t make vast amounts of money but the segregation of wages in the game is pretty bad and it’s getting worse.”
Hargreaves started his career at Wigan, and then moved on to St Helens, before joining the Bulls in 2010, and made 167 top flight appearances during his career.
He also spoke out about the licensing system and the infamous Stobart Super League sponsorship deal, for which the clubs did not receive a penny, but instead saw their brands advertised on the side of Eddie Stobart lorries.
He added: “The sport is on tenterhooks at the moment and the people in charge of the game need to do something about it.
“I thought this whole licensing process was supposed to stop things like this happening. But it’s happened to three clubs now – Wakefield, Crusaders and Bradford – in such a short space of time and there are other clubs that are on the verge.
“It’s a downward spiral and there is no way of raising the cap to sign players because the clubs don’t have any money.
“The Stobart deal has to be the worst sponsorship deal in history. How can it actually be a sponsor if there’s no actual money for it? It’s obviously not worked and things need to change.”