The Newcastle Knights’ ongoing investigation into the incident involving injured players Kalyn Ponga and Kurt Mann being found together in a Newcastle hotel toilet cubicle has revealed the players in question were only at the venue for a total of 25 minutes.
Fox Sports reports that Knights officials were told the duo arrived at the Delany Hotel in Newcastle at 10.45pm on the Saturday in question and had already left by 11.10pm following the cubicle incident.
Venue staff have also told officials the pair were not intoxicated, which contradicts the narrative fed by both the players and Ponga’s father Andre in the aftermath.
It remains to be seen what the club investigation will determine and what punishment would be handed down to the pair if they were found to have lied in their initial statements.
The news comes just days after reports Bradman Best and Enari Tuala were demoted to NSW Cup duties for being late to catch the team bus on Sunday morning, as well as the recent saga surrounding David Klemmer’s on-field blow up at trainer Hayden Knowles that saw the star prop hit with a breach notice for refusing to follow orders.
Though the Knights recently welcomed respected administrator Peter Parr to the organisation, things keep going from bad to worse for the struggling club, who have won just three of their past 10 games and sit languishing in 14th place on the ladder thanks to an appalling defensive record.
Fox Sports reports Kurt Mann is likely be fined for drinking while sidelined with a soft tissue injury, but it’s been suggested the club’s marquee man Ponga may escape punishment as he had not been given any specific directive by medical staff to avoid alcohol.