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South Sydney Give Jason Taylor The Boot

The Mad Chatter - Wednesday, September 16, 2009

South's Coach Jason Taylor has been sacked. Was it fair?Jason Taylor, one of the greatest goal kickers in rugby league history, has been given the boot from his coaching role after an incident at South Sydney’s end of season function.  Former first grade coach John Lang has been appointed to take over in 2010.

Rumours all week suggested the first grade coach was on his way out after he was involved in an alleged punch up with David Fa’alogo at Forrester’s Hotel in Sydney on 6 September 2009. Some insiders believe the South Sydney Board may have used this incident as an opportunity to get rid of Taylor from their payroll rather than the incident being so serious it warranted him being sacking.

NRL chief David Gallop, South Sydney power duo Shane Richardson and Nick Pappas flew to Coffs Harbour on Wednesday night to meet with South’s owner Russel Crowe. At this point, no decision had been made on Taylor’s future by the club and this was confirmed in a statement by South Sydney.

However, an overnight stay on the Coffs Harbour farm and further deliberations by the South Sydney Board today led to the sacking.

Jason Taylor who still had one year left on his contract issued a statement today and promised to clear his name.

“I refer to the much publicised incident involving me and David Fa’alogo at Forrester’s Hotel on 6 September 2009,” Taylor said.

“My attendance at Forrester’s was expressly approved by the club. I was never told I should not attend and no time restrictions were ever put on my attendance. I drank responsibly at Forrester’s. I was not intoxicated. I have three independent witness statements from Forrester’s bar and security staff that confirm this.

Taylor continued.

“Along with players (including David Fa’alogo), I engaged in pretend, light-weight, kung-fu play. David was a willing participant in the play encounter that directly preceded the incident. My actions at Forrester’s and since have not brought the Club into disrepute and I did not breach my contract of employment or any code of conduct. I deeply regret the impact that this has brought to my family, the players, the members and the Club.”

It looks like this fight is far from over.

“I believe that I have been treated unfairly by the Club, I will be taking the matter further and doing all I can to defend my honour and clear my good name,” Taylor said.

In my opinion Jason Taylor is one of the most respected men in the game. Surely if Taylor’s description of the incident is true, no contracts should have been torn up. 

I hope the South Sydney Board know what they’re doing or it may well be their contracts being torn up.

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