Warriors play to the spirit of the law over Marsh
For Immediate Release
Warriors play to the spirit of the law over Marsh signing
Auckland, New Zealand, July 5, 2001 – The Vodafone Warriors vehemently deny allegations made by Parramatta chief executive Denis Fitzgerald that NRL anti-tampering laws have been broken during the Warriors signing of Parramatta halfback P.J. Marsh.
Vodafone Warriors general manager Mick Watson confirmed the club had reached an agreement with Marsh on Tuesday, July 3 through Marsh’s agent, Jim Bangahan.
“P.J. instructed Bangahan to accept our offer and we have in our possession a signed agreement explicitly stating term and remuneration. P.J. was absolutely thrilled with the prospect of playing alongside Stacey Jones and for Daniel Anderson,” said Watson.
“We have done everything by the book in signing P.J., in fact we have gone over and above what is normally done in player negotiations. Daniel Anderson actually gave Brian Smith a courtesy call on Monday, July 2 advising him we were intending to make P.J. an offer – Daniel didn’t have to do that, but did so out of respect for his former associate. Perhaps Parramatta didn’t take us seriously but it is not our problem they decided to do nothing about it.”
Watson said the NRL anti-tampering deadline of June 30 allows clubs time to re-sign players they want to keep on their books. “The fact Parramatta had not re-signed P.J. before 30 June tells me that he was available to the free market - they had plenty of time to re-sign him. Not only have we played to the letter of the law but also within the spirit of the law.”
“I have contacted both David Moffett and Ian Schubert of the NRL and advised them the exact process we have gone through. They rightly advise that this is a matter between Parramatta and us - they have no concerns with regard to any breach of anti-tampering rules. The legal opinion we have sought also supports our stance that we have a binding agreement with P.J.”
The Vodafone Warriors take on Parramatta this Saturday night at Ericsson Stadium.