NRL 2019: Shaun Johnson caught using phone during match, against the rules

Cronulla Sharks pivot Shaun Johnson could face sanction from the NRL after cameras caught him using his mobile phone in the dressing sheds after going off injured during his side's defeat to the Broncos.

The five-eighth left the field injured in the 22nd minute after picking up a hamstring injury while trying to chase down Broncos winger Corey Oates.

Just before halftime, the broadcast coverage cut to images of a depressed Johnson sitting with an ice pack around his left hamstring with what looked like a phone in his hand mid-match.

Under an NRL policy introduced two years ago, players are banned from using phones in the rooms to eliminate the possibility of inside information leaking and illegal bets being placed.

While the 28-year-old was most likely letting his family in New Zealand know he was fine, the NRL may not be lenient given due to pass incidents.

People were quick to point out the images showing Johnson on his phone, and injured Titans hooker Nathan Peats called for the NRL to have some "common sense" if they decide to fine the New Zealand international.

"When you get hurt the first thing you want to do is let your partner and parents know you're ok," Peats Tweeted.

"Not to give information to someone to put a bet on. Rules are rules I understand but have some common sense."

The injury adds to the Sharks' growing list of players in the casualty ward, which includes Matt Moylan, Josh Dugan, Wade Graham and Aaron Woods. 

Sharks coach John Morris hopes the injury isn't too serious, but depending on the severity of the strain, he could be facing between two and 10 weeks on the sidelines

"He left the field in some discomfort. We have got to get him scanned and hold our breath again," he said.

"When he walks off with that amount of pain you wouldn't expect it to be a minor complaint, so fingers crossed."

Morris then joked that he may have to come out of retirement to play next week due to the growing injury list.

"I will try to find 17 fit players next week. I might have to pull the jersey on again.

"But one of the first words I think of when it comes to the Sharkies, they are a very resilient club - we always find a way to fight back."

The Broncos went onto to claim their second win of the season, beating the Sharks 29-6.