Last night, rugby league was shocked to its core when another former Super League and Championship player spoke out about taking performance enhancing drugs.
That man was Oliver Wilkes, who spoke about the criticism he knew he would face following the story.
The former Wigan Warriors, Leigh Centurions and Wakefield Trinity prop told ITV in a bombshell interview: “I used to see people who I was as good as, then all of a sudden come back after a pre-season massive. I’d never say what club, what name. And then just see ’em absolutely tear it up,” Wilkes confessed to ITV.
“They were quite slow at the start of pre-season, just a bit heavy and then shred up a bit. I assume they’d be clean by this point and avoided being caught…”
That led Wilkes to ‘try’ the drugs himself.
“I signed for Whitehaven and I was only training two times a week, and they’d offered me alright money and I thought to myself, I was like: ‘Should I have some, see what all the fuss is about?’
“So I tried a performance enhancing drug, a banned one, and six weeks into the season I got a phone call off Wigan, to sign for Wigan. And, uh, I thought to myself: ‘Well’, I thought: ‘It worked.'”
Now, though, former Super League and Great Britain winger, Brian Carney, has told Sky Sports that there is no widespread issue in the sport, but criticised Wilkes and other players for not apologising.
“I roll my eyes when we now see them roll out and talk about some issues they have faced subsequent to their bans or coming out and describing the events of their careers,” Carney said.
“Where’s the word sorry in all this? The game of rugby league has now got to publicly defend itself against charges of widespread performance enhancing drugs abuse in the sport which is not the case.
“I’m close to the game, I’m close to current players, recently retired players and that is not the case.”