Hayne circus hardly low-key for Eels

By Scott Bailey, Scott Bailey is a Roar Guru

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    Jarryd Hayne has instructed his legal team to have a United States civil suit including a rape allegation against him sorted “as quick as possible”.

    And it’s likely Parramatta will be hoping they do just that.

    The Hayne circus returned to the Eels training base on Wednesday, some 35 months after he shocked a packed press conference in October 2014 when he quit the NRL to head to the NFL.

    This time around, the mood wasn’t so upbeat. But the throng of cameras, journalists and microphones was far bigger.

    Hayne attended Wednesday’s media opportunity supported by Eels coach Brad Arthur and long-time mentor Joe Grima.

    The 29-year-old first reaffirmed his denial of the claims, then confirmed he’d hired a high-profile US lawyer to defend the case in court via a written statement.

    Hayne first answered questions from Santa Clara investigators over the alleged December 2015 incident in May of the following year. By October 2016, the DA’s office decided there wasn’t enough evidence to proceed with a criminal case.

    However, the woman, known only as Ms V, is now pursuing the two-time Dally M winner on claims of sexual battery, gender violence, infliction of emotional distress and negligence in a civil suit.

    But Hayne insisted he wouldn’t be affected by the scandal possibly hanging over his head as the season kicks off.

    “It’s just one of those things you’ve got to go through,” Hayne said.

    “You’re going to go through a bit of adversity. As players we go through all sorts of things. This is the situation we’re in and I’ll go through it.

    “I’m thankful from all the support from the staff and everyone at the Eels. It means a lot to me.”

    Coach Arthur is renowned for preferring a low-key approach but Wednesday’s media throng rivalled the attendances throughout their scandal-plagued 2016 season.

    Hayne has become a walking headline in recent years, but even by his standards this attention has been overwhelming on his return to Parramatta from the Gold Coast.

    On Wednesday he expressed frustration at the media for questioning his family and approaching him while on a pre-planned trip to Israel.

    When cameras converged on the Eels’ training on Wednesday, teammates could be heard joking it was obvious that Hayne was back.

    Wednesday’s press conference should ease some pressure, but it seems inevitable the spotlight will return with each twist in the tale as the season approaches.

    Hayne also has work to do on the paddock.

    The NSW State of Origin star struggled to keep pace with the forwards as they ran laps on Wednesday morning, before he looked far more at home in ball drills after taking his six weeks off following Fiji’s World Cup run.

    “The lungs were alright but I think it was more the legs – the conditioning,” Hayne said.

    “A big 11 weeks before the season starts so it should be good and raring to go.

    “I’m looking forward to getting back into the grind of things and the every-day type of sessions you get out west.”

    © AAP 2018

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    The Crowd Says (9)

    • January 4th 2018 @ 8:39am
      Dave_S said | January 4th 2018 @ 8:39am | ! Report

      He would be mad not to settle it. That’s not to prejudge him – I have no idea what if anything happened. But the disruption to his family, personal and playing life would be huge if he fully defended it. (And possibly just as expensive).

    • January 4th 2018 @ 8:55am
      Greg Ambrose said | January 4th 2018 @ 8:55am | ! Report

      Will he be lean, fast and fit by the start of the season? All the other players had been keeping their fitness up to a certain standard but he looked like he had no fitness. The aging champions at the Storm looked as fit as anyone in the comp and the results followed but unless Hayne is properly motivated then it’s a long season ahead.

    • January 4th 2018 @ 9:04am
      PanthertillIdie said | January 4th 2018 @ 9:04am | ! Report

      Jarryd Hayne ? the guy is surely one of the most overrated ‘superstars’ in the game. How long can he dine out on past glories? Very average player since his return. I’ll take it back if he returns to the level he played at when last at the eels but I can’t see it happening. People are talking about him returning and playing for ‘unders’ with figures like $500k bandied about but I’d say he’s a risk at that sort of amount!
      I guess I’m showing that I don’t really think much of the bloke!
      I do realise this article has nothing to do with his value but I can’t believe the publicity he continues to get positive or otherwise.

    • January 4th 2018 @ 9:43am
      Johnnyball said | January 4th 2018 @ 9:43am | ! Report

      Think Parramatta have made a very serious error re-signing Jarrod.
      Time will tell I guess

    • Roar Guru

      January 4th 2018 @ 11:52am
      Nat said | January 4th 2018 @ 11:52am | ! Report

      This allegation aside, he is a walking circus and a story can be made from him every day of the week. Surely Parra knew this would happen. He plays well, the media are all over him. He plays badly and the same happens just now in Sydney there are 20 more journos to follow him around. Have to wonder if BA was put in the same position as Henry with their respective boards? I’m only disappointed he gave Buzz credibility in this whole scenario.

    • Roar Pro

      January 4th 2018 @ 8:19pm
      Adam Hayward said | January 4th 2018 @ 8:19pm | ! Report

      I highly doubt Brad Arthur will tolerate Hayne’s crap. If he doesn’t perform on the field, Arthur will send him packing to the NSW cup

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