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Fifita to miss Magic Round after judiciary upholds charge

Titans second rower David Fifita is will miss the NRL's Magic Round, after the judiciary upheld his charge.

Fifita was originally charged with a grade two careless high tackle after connecting with Tiger Adam Doueihi late in the round nine clash.

The Titans were unsuccessful in arguing that Fifita's charge should be considered a grade one rather than a grade two action. 

The charge means that Fifita will miss the next two games - Magic Round against the Panthers and the Titans round 11 match against the Canterbury Bulldogs.

Fifita, who joined via video link, was represented by Mal Meninga at the judiciary.

NRL prosecutor Peter McGrath submitted that Fifita was "highly careless" and launched himself at Doueihi after being "wrong-footed" with his feet leaving the ground.

McGrath argued there was moderate force in the tackle but he conceded the risk of injury was low because Fifita collected the side of Doueihi's face with his palm or wrist.

Meninga countered by saying that Doueihi had decreased his height as he approached contact and claimed that Fifita's feet being in the air upon impact reduced the force.

He claimed the incident wasn't even worthy of a sin-bin and argued that Fifita used a "wrapping, slapping, cupping motion" while Doueihi's head never hit the ground.

"Were not saying it's not careless, what we're saying is there's no swinging arm – there's a sort of cupping motion on player Doueihi's head," Meninga said.

"Momentum of both players helped drag Doueihi to the ground."

The Titans referred to an incident from last year in which Rabbitohs fullback Latrell Mitchell received a grade-one careless high tackle charge for a similar shot on Wests Tigers second-rower Luke Garner as evidence that a grade-two ruling was too harsh for Fifita.

Meninga posited that Mitchell was in a better position to make a tackle and used a swinging arm. McGrath argued that Mitchell's force was lower.

Judiciary chairman Geoff Bellew instructed the panel to deem the Mitchell comparable unhelpful if they believe that incident was judged too leniently.

After just 20 minutes of deliberation the judiciary panel decided that Fifita's shot on Adam Doueihi warranted its initial grading.