Peponis stands firm

Bulldogs Chairman Dr George Peponis has re-instated the club?s stance on not revealing details of internal drug tests at a press conference this afternoon.

Dr Peponis called the 12pm media gathering after The Daily Telegraph and Sydney Morning Herald today named Willie Mason as the player who tested positive to cocaine last year.

The Bulldogs will not confirm nor deny that a player tested positive to drugs during routine internal testing. Mason is denying he is the player who was reportedly fined $25,000 after tests were returned positive.

Dr Peponis along with Club Chaplin Ken Clendinning were in attendance at this afternoon?s media conference.

?As I?ve said previously, the Bulldogs players? legal rights, along with their rights to privacy and confidentiality, as outlined in the Bulldogs Workplace Code of Health, Safety and Conduct- as well at law - must be respected,? Dr Peponis said.

?We are trying to be as open as we can with everyone. However, you must appreciate the constraints imposed on us.

?Therefore, I cannot, and will not, comment on those reports other than to say that the Code was introduced to reduce the harm, and risk of harm associated with the abuse of alcohol and other substances.?

Dr Peponis praised his club?s stance on internal drug testing, saying the Bulldogs are among just a few clubs who do such tests on a regular basis.

?This is beyond the normal requirements of the NRL, we do this because we care for the Health, Safety (and) Welfare of our players,? Dr Peponis said.

The Daily Telegraph, which today carries a front page story revealing that Mason tested positive for cocaine, says a ?senior league source? confirmed the story to them.

Mason was earlier this month fined $10,000 for turning up to police interviews over an alleged sexual assault in Coffs Harbour, involving up to six Bulldogs players, wearing inappropriate dress. Dr Peponis said the Bulldogs are under no obligation to pass on information regarding any positive drug tests to police.