The career of reigning Super League Man of Steel Ben Barba is almost certainly over with the RFL stating he will not be allowed to play in any English division if he is banned by the NRL.
Barba was sacked by North Queensland Cowboys last week after CCTV footage showed him allegedly assaulting his partner at a casino in Townsville.
NRL CEO Todd Greenberg said Barba would not be permitted to join another club if found guilty by the NRL, a ban that will now also carry over to Super League.
It is a huge blow for a player looking to reignite his career in Australia after he was sacked by Cronulla Sharks in 2016 for failing a drugs test.
But after Super League proved to be Barba’s saving grace on that occasion, it seems that will not be an option this time around leaving him with no future in the sport.
“We will always uphold any ban imposed by the NRL under a reciprocal agreement between RFL and the NRL,” a RFL statement said .
“Independent to that arrangement, the RFL Board has the right to refuse registration to any player – and would also consult with the Super League in that process.
“We are bound to follow that process – but if the facts of this case turn out to be as reported, the RFL would condemn them as deplorable.”
Barba’s behaviour and several other off-season incidents in the NRL will be discussed at a meeting of the ARL Commission in Sydney this Wednesday.