He has been given a final warning by Knights officials, and now, boom youngster Peter Mata’utia will look to put this incident behind him, after he was cleared of serious misconduct, due to an alcohol-related incident on Sunday morning.
The arrest came after an altercation in Darby Street on Sunday morning at 1:50am, with Mata’utia spending the night at the Police station – though at the time, he was unable to be interviewed, due to his high level of intoxication.
Knights officials said: â€˜â€˜The police have confirmed that no charges will be laid following a minor incident involving a Newcastle Knights player last Saturday night.â€™â€™
Put in front of both coach Wayne Bennett, and CEO Matt Gidley, it was Bennett who set Mata’utia straight, who has been involved in some issues in the past.
Gidley simply said:
â€˜Heâ€™s walked out of here today knowing absolutely what the consequences will be if he steps out of line again.
â€˜â€˜His manager knows exactly where he stands. That was made very, very clear.â€™â€™
Despite the somewhat negative publicity that the incident has brought to the Knights club, the Knights will forever take firm stances, and treat every incident seriously .
â€˜â€˜We wanted to send a clear message right now about the way we want to handle any type of player misbehaviour,â€™â€™ Gidley said.
â€˜â€˜We will be tolerant. If there are minor things or first offences, weâ€™ll take that into account.
â€˜â€˜But itâ€™s a repeat thing, you have to deal with it yourself.â€™â€™
Gidley hopes that the fine and warning to Mata’utia would be sufficient to get the message to sink in, with Gidley believing that individual players are responsible for their actions, when it comes to being injured.
â€˜â€˜When the injury happens, there is a 72-hour [no-alcohol] period around when the injury is diagnosed,â€™â€™ Gidley said.
â€˜â€˜Then we put the onus back on the players to get themselves rehabbed and back in full training.
â€˜â€˜Weâ€™re not going to stop a player who is out injured having a glass of wine at a birthday or anything like that.
â€˜â€˜But Peteâ€™s been back in full training for a few weeks now.â€™â€™
The NRL are awaiting the Knights report on the Mata’utia incident.