Three Penrith players have been issued breach notices by the NRL – with one also being stood down by the club – for controversial photos that surfaced following their 2021 premiership triumph.
The Panthers had drawn heavy criticism from all NRL circles after reports emerged that the Provan-Summons trophy had been broken in wild post-match celebrations, with further ire drawn after Nathan Cleary and Stephen Crichton were shown pushing the various pieces of broken silverware around in prams.
The NRL today, while absolving the duo of personal responsibility for damaging the trophy, alleges they “subsequently treated the Trophy in a manner which showed disrespect towards the individuals depicted in the iconic moment memorialised on the Trophy.”
Fines of $7000 for Cleary and $4000 for Crichton – differing due to their salaries – have been proposed.
The Panthers have also been tasked with footing the bill for the cost of repairing the iconic trophy.
In a club statement, Panthers CEO offered a sincere apology for the “distress this matter may have caused the Rugby League community and particularly the Provan and Summons families,” while also insisting Panthers players never intended to show disrespect to the trophy, nor to Norm Provan or Arthur Summons.
Meanwhile, Tyrone May could be in even bigger strife after he too was issued a breach notice, before being stood down indefinitely by the club.
A $7500 fine was proposed for May, for the alleged “posting and being part of social media posts which do not align with the values of the game.”
May recently posted a since-deleted image on Instagram of him leaving Parramatta Local Court with rap lyrics that appeared to dismiss his recent legal troubles. May plead guilty in 2019 to four counts of intentionally recording an intimate image without consent.
In the same club statement, the Panthers announced that May had been stood down “from all club-related duties and appearances until further notice,” and that an upcoming board meeting would see the matter discussed further.