Parramatta Eels Chairman's Message

Firstly, I wish Kieran Foran all the very best as he takes time to focus on personal challenges.

Kieran has already made a terrific contribution to our club. He is a wonderful man, held in the highest regard by everyone at the Eels.

Good luck Kieran, we are with you.

Congratulations to our team who were inspirational and determined for the full 80 minutes against an ever-formidable opponent.

They endured the Bulldogs’ onslaught and prevailed, despite key injuries. It was a tough, resilient win from a team we can be very proud of.

Our Eels were spectacular.

From the media speculation it seems that in the week ahead, the NRL’s salary cap investigation will be reaching one of its decision points. Our club - managers, coaching staff, administration and all members of the board - have offered full co-operation, transparency and support for the investigation.

The process as we understand it is this: if the NRL decides to find fault with the club, then there will be a breach notice to which the club has 28 days to respond.

It is the club’s intention to analyse in detail any decision. We want to make sure that the investigation has treated our club fairly. We have asked, and continue to ask for natural justice and procedural fairness. 

This means we are asking for a fair hearing. For allegations to be tested. That we have the chance to face our accusers. That if there are penalties, then they are appropriate to the alleged breaches. That fact has been distilled from fiction. And that all of the smear and speculation which has so dominated the public arena has not been simply accepted.

These are the reasons why we sought assurances from the NRL that we will be allowed the chance to discuss our concerns about the investigation before any decisions were made. To date, this has been denied.

As a result, our club also reserves all of our legal rights. Rights which we will assert if we believe we have not been treated fairly. We are prepared to fight through the courts if need be.

For the past 11 months, our club has been under unprecedented scrutiny from the NRL. We have participated in a governance review. We have worked tirelessly to implement all mandatory requirements of the independent PwC report and are striving to do more. 

We are committed to ensuring our club has the best practice governance models in the code. To this end, we will require our Members’ support for even more reforms in the future as part of our drive for best practice governance.   

We shall see what the next week brings. Again, I will keep you fully informed.

Steve Sharp