His recent off-field indiscretions were well-known and well-documented but after the Cronulla Sharks met with Barba and his management, they discussed a new contract proposal for consideration by the NRL.
The Cronulla Sharks released a statement of their own on the matter and it reads as follows:
“Sharks Grand Final winning fullback Ben Barba has agreed to a new one-year contract with the club for the 2017 season.
Barba, who featured in all 27 Sharks matches in 2016, scoring 15 tries and delivering a team-high 18 try assists, has worked diligently on making his return to the NRL a reality and is continuing his well-being program.
The club met with Barba and his management to discuss the new contract proposal for consideration by the NRL.
The contract will be submitted to the NRL for approval and registration.
Should his contract be ratified and accepted the club will work with the NRL Integrity Unit to determine a time frame for Barba’s integration back into the Sharks NRL program and in relation to his return to training.”