NRL chief Todd Greenberg wants Kieran Foran to be back playing league again – but the chances of him being registered in time to take up a contract with New Zealand Warriors are remote.
The Manly premiership winner and former Parramatta captain hopes to re-start his career with the Warriors next season after signing a one-year contract.
However, a clause in the deal with the Auckland-based club, which is believed to require Foran to be cleared by the NRL’s integrity unit by December, is almost certain to scupper those plans.
Warriors chief Jim Doyle is lobbying the NRL to green-light the 26-year-old’s return before that deadline but Fairfax Media has learnt that is next to no chance of happening.
Greenberg said on Monday he was keen to have Foran back in the game but “only under the right conditions”.
“I’m like everyone else. I want to see Kieran Foran back playing rugby league,” Greenberg said. “But we have to ensure that we understand fully the issues that he’s dealing with and our integrity unit will do that over the coming months.
“We need to be very careful on how we do that and it needs to be done appropriately so I’m not going to provide a running commentary throughout it. I’m a supporter of him playing football again but only under the right conditions.”
The NRL would need to be satisfied about the merits of Foran’s registration on a range of issues from his mental state to his links with controversial punter Eddie Hayson, who he continues to associate with.
The spectre of the NSW police strike force into claims of match-fixing in the game is also a factor.
If Foran’s re-entry to the code is not ratified before the period set out in his Warriors contract, the deal would be rendered null and void.
Foran told Fairfax Media last week that he and his godfather Don Mackinnon, an Auckland lawyer, had made contact with the NRL integrity unit six weeks ago in an effort to get advice on what conditions he would have to meet to resume his career in the competition, vowing that he would cut ties with Hayson if and when told he had to.
He has strongly denied any involvement in match-fixing and on Sunday night took to social media to again reinforce his claims of innocence and hit out at the media for “prying into my personal life”.
“I want to assure you, I have done nothing wrong,” he posted on Instagram. “I took a break from the game because I felt I wasn’t in the head space to uphold my commitments as a contracted footballer.
“I have been very open about my struggle with health issues and asked for time to concentrate on rebuilding my life. Every day I wake up with a positive outlook, but then I read my name in the headlines. This makes it very difficult to move forward with a positive mindset.
“All I have done, is gotten sick, admitted publicly to it and taken time out for myself. I just ask that I am given the time I need to heal in peace.” This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.