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Sport NRL legend blacklists sacked Dragons star

01:52  08 july  2021
01:52  08 july  2021 Source:   wwos.nine.com.au

What you might have missed from Thursday's NRL press conference

  What you might have missed from Thursday's NRL press conference Another day of NRL news is behind us as round 16 is officially upon us. Following news of his shoulder injury, Nathan Cleary has spoken to the media about his upcoming rehab program. Trent Barrett has opened up on the COVID dramas facing his club, as well as the season-ending injury to Nick Cotric. And Anthony Griffin has explained why he won't let Matt Dufty and Corey Norman move on early despite not having a future at the Dragons beyond this year. Here's a wrap up of the news you might have missed from Thursday's club press conferences.

a close up of a man: Paul Vaughan of the Dragons. © Getty Paul Vaughan of the Dragons.

NRL legend Cooper Cronk has launched a withering attack on Paul Vaughan, saying that he'd blacklist the sacked Dragons star.

Cronk said that while Vaughan was certain to pick up another club, he would struggle to play alongside the repeat offender.

The Dragons sacked Vaughan after an alleged sexting incident, a biosecurity breach where he visited a cafe during level four NRL restrictions, then the already-infamous party he hosted last weekend during the ongoing lockdown; which directly defied orders from the club's senior officials, including coach Anthony Griffin.

Dragons stars investigated over house party

  Dragons stars investigated over house party Dragons players are being investigated over an alleged house party, held despite Sydney's COVID-19 lockdown and the NRL's biosecurity bubble rules.Dragons players are being investigated over an alleged house party, held despite Sydney's COVID-19 lockdown and the NRL's biosecurity bubble rules.

"It's inexcusable, there's no doubt. If this continues, there might be some more stories that come out in the next couple of days of what happened," Cronk said on NRL 360.

"Paul Vaughan is gone, obviously. He ran the gauntlet, got caught. And he'll pick up another club but it won't be near the amount of money.

"As a player that's played the game and as a senior player that wants to win a competition, I'd struggle to play with Paul Vaughan because you want to win comps built on character, trust, resilience.

"If he's gone against the law twice, blatantly, you'd struggle to line up next to him in big games.

"There's no doubt that Paul Vaughan is a talented football player, he helps your team win games and things like that. But to win a comp, it's built on character and trust."

Paul Vaughan hosted 12 other Dragons players at his Shellharbour house. Why did it cost him so much?

  Paul Vaughan hosted 12 other Dragons players at his Shellharbour house. Why did it cost him so much? Why was prop Paul Vaughan given the harshest punishment for the party he hosted under Sydney's stay-at-home orders, and what do the suspensions mean for the Dragons' NRL season?So what happened and why was Vaughan singled out for special treatment?


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Cronk said that he would give other players a pass mark, yet pointed out that Griffin had already made damning calls.

He pointed to the decision to offload gun fullback Matt Dufty, despite him being one of the team's best players. Dufty was reportedly out the front of Vaughan's house when police arrived following a noise complaint, running 5km home to his house.

"I think the 12 other players haven't been trusted for the first time, they didn't sign into a QR code under a different name last time," Cronk said, referring to Vaughan's cafe breach.

"I think the second strike goes heavily against Paul Vaughan but the other guys have some runs on the board. I think Anthony Griffin has actually made decisions around cleaning out that character out of the Dragons.

Vaughan's future on the line with Dragons

  Vaughan's future on the line with Dragons The contract of St George Illawarra prop Paul Vaughan is up for discussion at a club board meeting on Tuesday after he hosted an illegal party on Saturday.Jack de Belin and other players are also facing increased sanction on top of the one-game suspensions and the $305,000 worth of fines handed out to the group by the NRL on Monday.

"The questions about Matt Dufty, one of the best players in our competition but for some reason he's not being given a contract. So Anthony Griffin is making some drastic changes.

"What about the call [to] the other guys and say they [police] are coming - he just took off by himself!"

a close up of Cooper Cronk: Cooper Cronk after winning the 2019 grand final, his last game of rugby league. © Getty Cooper Cronk after winning the 2019 grand final, his last game of rugby league.

Vaughan was reportedly offered to the Brisbane Broncos, only for new head of football Ben Ikin to decline.

The former Australian Test and NSW Origin prop was contracted with St George Illawarra for $800,000 next season, making his sacking extremely costly.

Vaughan was already on the nose with the Dragons, according to The Mole, with a club insider saying that his attitude had been disappointing. He pointed out that the 30-year-old had not been part of St George Illawarra's leadership group, despite his considerable experience. An unnamed player also told The Mole that players who had not attended the party were furious with their errant teammates.

Vaughan said that he was desperate to resume his career with another club.

"I would love to continue playing NRL, whether that be the case ... I have a burning desire to not only show I can continue on playing but to prove myself and to people that I'm a good person and to repay the faith," he said on NRL 360.

Dragons face more uncertainty on duo .
St George Illawarra pair Zac Lomax and Daniel Alvaro may have to wait longer to fly to Queensland, depending on when the NRL can get their next flights in.Lomax and Alvaro were the only two of the Dragons' dirty dozen not to sign statements verifying the details of Paul Vaughan's illegal barbecue a fortnight ago.

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