NRL Handing Out Breach Notices

The National Rugby League has today served the Sydney Roosters and the Penrith Panthers with breach notices following Round 13 of the Telstra Premiership.

The Panthers face a $10,000 fine for failing to correctly register a player in Saturday night's match against the Cowboys and the Roosters also face a $10,000 fine for post match comments made by the club.

Penrith's Steve Turner was registered to play through the NSWRL and was eligible to take part in the match against the Cowboys, but his final registration with the NRL had not been completed. Despite the technical nature of the matter, the NRL has breached the Panthers because of the importance of clubs complying with the registration process.

"There are certainly circumstances where this could lead to a club jeopardising its competition points," NRL Chief Executive, Mr. David Gallop said today. "In this case the player is a local junior registered through the NSWRL and under contract to the club for the past two years. There was no question regarding his eligibility or his obligation to abide by the rules.

"However, the registration through the NRL is an important part of the way the game is conducted and clubs have the responsibility of ensuring all players are correctly registered."

The Roosters' breach notice followed post match comments by both Brad Fittler and Ricky Stuart.

Mr Fittler's comments in a Sydney newspaper described a video referee's decision as being "just a rort", while Mr Stuart's were made regarding the nature of penalties awarded to the Bulldogs.

"We have been open in accepting criticism of decisions and will continue to be," Mr Gallop said.

"We have also been clear that if the integrity of officials or the integrity of the game is impugned then we would take action."

Both clubs have five working days in which to make formal submissions in relation to the breaches before the fines are imposed.