The NSW police is investigating 2 matches following the National Rugby League (NRL) cheating allegations. The state’s Organised Crime Squad is examining the two matches. The matches under scrutiny are last year’s Manly v Souths round 16 and Manly v Parramatta round 24. In both matches Manly lost by 20-8 and 20-16 respectively.
A police spokesperson told The Daily Telegraph, “The Organised Crime Squad is in the early stages of examining information to alleged match fixing in the NRL. No further comment is appropriate at this stage.”
In a press release, NRL responded to the news on Thursday. It stated that it is fully cooperating with the investigation on match-fixing accusations. NRL spokesperson confirmed that the organization is treating it as a matter of concern and is ready to take action “to protect the integrity of the game”.
It is yet another blow to Parramatta Eels as they were already surrounded by controversy. Last week, Corey Norman received a warning for consorting with criminals. The controversy was triggered by a photo which featured Norman with his teammate Junior Paulo and Penrith Panthers star James Segeyaro dining with former bikies boss Paulie Younan and money launderer and fraudster Rafat Alameddine, as reported by stuff.co.nz.
After issuing the warning NRL CEO Todd Greenberg said that the players should take the warning seriously as it was issued under section 93X of the Organised Crime Squad.
Greenberg further stated, “This reflects poorly on the players involved and is a bad look for the game. I would expect those who have received warnings to take them very seriously. The penalties for ignoring a warning are severe and we fully support the police in the action they have taken.”
There is a possibility that the warning for consorting with criminals would be issued for more NRL players as police are concerned with underworld figures involvement in match fixing.
Detective Inspector Wayne Walpole, in charge of the state’s charter against organized crime infiltrating sport, said, “I’m not saying corruption or match fixing has happened, but I’m saying the infiltration is there and that infiltration can lead to the compromise of the sports of the athlete”