Mitchell, Addo-Carr, Cleary and Roberts-Davis punished by NRL for social distancing breaches

South Sydney Rabbitohs fullback Latrell Mitchell

Latrell Mitchell, Josh Addo-Carr, Nathan Cleary and Tyronne Roberts-Davis. 

Just when rugby league and the NRL was bracing, hoping, for a smooth lead-up to the resumption, it’s been anything but.

All four players have been caught up in social distancing breaches and the NRL have acted swiftly.

Addo-Carr, Mitchell & Roberts-Davis were all fined $50k, after a social media post in Taree went viral.

The post showed the trio standing around a campfire with others, a clear breach of current social distancing protocols.

The fine by the NRL is on top of both Addo-Carr and Mitchell already being fined $1k by NSW police.

Melbourne Storm winger Josh Addo-Carr

The NRL were certainly not happy with what transpired and Chairman Peter V’Landys critcised the players’ actions.

“It is important that, in these challenging times, we all have to work together to combat COVID-19 and compliance with public health orders is a critical requirement,’” he said.

“The players have to understand that they are putting the game and the community at risk by their actions.

“It’s certainly hard to accept such behaviour when the game is doing everything it can to persuade the community that its players are responsible and behave appropriately.”

Newcastle Knights centre Tyronne Roberts-Davis

Roberts-Davis, who was also in Taree, was hit with a $10k fine for his breach of social distancing rules.

Also caught up in a separate incident was Penrith Panthers halfback Nathan Cleary.

He was fined $10k after pictures emerged of him getting close to some female friends at his house on ANZAC Day.

The Panthers acknowledged the incident involving their star play-maker.

Penrith Panthers halfback Nathan Cleary

“Penrith Panthers acknowledges the photos of Nathan Cleary being shared by the media in regards to social distancing regulations,” a Panthers statement read.

“The club was first made aware of the photos on Tuesday morning and immediately forwarded them to the NRL.

“The matter is now in the hands of the NRL and the club will be making no further comment at this time.”

All four players have five days to respond to the breach notices handed to them, before a final decision is made.

Acting NRL CEO Andrew Abdo explained why Addo-Carr & Mitchell faced heavier fines.

“What’s happened with Latrell and Josh is they’ve gone on a planned holiday in which there were activities that involved camping and a wide number of people,” he said.

“That’s very different to someone being at home and whilst it’s still against the public health order, it’s a very different context to someone attending to your home in a very short and unplanned period of time.”

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