The NRL has handed down breach notices against four players for “bringing the game into disrepute” after they were found to have breached social distancing regulations.
In a massive blow to the code as they attempt to gain government approval for a restart to the season, Josh Addo-Carr, Latrell Mitchell, Tyronne Roberts-Davis and Nathan Cleary were all revealed on social media over the last few days to have clearly breached social distancing regulations
Addo-Carr’s Instagram revealed he, Mitchell and Roberts-Davis attended a gathering of roughly ten people in Taree on the New South Wales mid-north coast, with Addo-Carr coming under further investigation over a potential firearms offence.
Cleary, meanwhile, was photographed in the company of five women at a residence on Anzac Day.
As a result of the breaches, Addo-Carr and Mitchell have both been fined $50,000 – with 60 per cent of the sum to be suspended for the remainder of the season – while Roberts-Davis and Cleary have been fined $10,000 with the same 60 per cent suspension.
All four players have also been given a one-match ban – again suspended for the remainder of the season.
Mitchell and Addo-Carr were given heavier sanctions as their breach was in relation to an organised holiday, whereas Cleary’s breach was in his own home.
“The players have to understand that they are putting the game and the community at risk by their actions,” ARLC chairman Peter V’landys said.
“It’s certainly hard to accept such behaviour when the game is doing everything it can to persuade the community that its players are responsible and behave appropriately.”
Acting NRL CEO Andrew Abdo said it was “important the players know they are held to a higher account”.
“The actions of our players that have come to light over the past couple of days has been disappointing and we have decided we needed to act swiftly,” he added.
The players have five days to respond to the breach notices.
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