Current Status: 24/7 Manly Fan
February 27, 2006
THE New Zealand Warriors have been penalised four 2006 NRL season competition points and $430,000 for salary cap breaches.
The Warriors' breach over the 2004 and 2005 NRL seasons related to total payments of close to $1 million.
Included in the breach are undisclosed payments, unregistered agreements with third parties and guaranteed payments to players after retirement.
The Warriors have five business days to make formal submissions in regard to the proposed penalty.
It is the first time a team has been stripped of competition points ahead of an NRL season.
"We can't have a system whereby clubs can gamble on breaking the rules, knowing that they can solve the issue at the end of the year by simply writing a cheque for a fine," NRL chief executive David Gallop said.
"Those charged with the responsibility of running a club for the owners, sponsors and fans have to know that they not only risk one season by breaking the rules, but that they can affect a club for years to come.
"The Warriors matter is a serious breach, it is not the biggest we have recorded but it is above anything that has simply incurred a fine in previous years."
Gallop added the co-operation of the current Warriors management had reduced the severity of the punishment.
"It has certainly been mitigated to some extent by the transparent actions of the current management," said Gallop.
"They are to be acknowledged for the professional manner in which they have conducted themselves, but even that cannot completely negate what has taken place.
"I am confident that they will now focus on restoring the confidence of the fans and players who support the club so passionately.
"It is up to everyone to accept that the club has paid a price and that it should now be able to move forward."