Gibbs may face trial by audio tape Dean Ritchie From: The Daily Telegraph April 19, 2010 7:46AM 39
Verballed … Wests Tigers prop Bryce Gibbs could still be charged over his verbal stoush with Bulldogs big man Ben Hannant. Source: The Daily Telegraph
THE NRL will today ask Channel 9 if it has audio of the Bryce Gibbs-Ben Hannant verbal exchange which could result in the Wests Tigers prop being charged by the match review committee.
The development comes after The Daily Telegraph was told Gibbs had been counselled by Wests Tigers management for his role in the Friday night flare-up.
Hannant has elected against lodging a formal complaint over Gibbs’ alleged religious slur following the SFS match, meaning the NRL is powerless to take action.
However the match review committee can still charge Gibbs and will investigate the drama this morning.
The only way though that the committee can make a case against Gibbs is if can obtain audio from Nine, who broadcast the game, where his alleged religious comment can be clearly heard.
If there is no audio and Hannant continues refusing to make a complaint, the matter will be dead.
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Gibbs has not confirmed or denied the allegation his verbal stoush with Hannant, a devout Mormon.
Wests Tigers chief executive Stephen Humphreys said he had spoken to Gibbs about the incident and reminded him of his on-field responsibilities.
"Lessons can he learned here and we have to make sure the players learn them,‘’ Humphreys said.
"I have spoken to Bryce and a number of players [from the match].
"It was a really spirited game. This wasn’t just a one-off comment. There was talk right through the game.
"We have counselled the players about where the lines are and what should and shouldn’t be crossed.
"It is an opportunity for the players to be reminded about what is appropriate behaviour and what isn’t.
"This has increased awareness on the issue and we can offer education. All players can learn from it.‘’
Humphreys confirmed his club would not take action against Gibbs.
"Todd [Greenberg, Canterbury CEO] and I spoke after the game and players were consulted,‘’ he said.
"We also had a good long chat yesterday.
"We are comfortable that things can be handled within each club.‘’
Gibbs publically claimed he would not apologise to Hannant.
The NRL cannot encourage an apology if neither Hannant or Gibbs reveal exactly what was said.
Gibbs will not elaborate on the exchange of words.
"Although there has been no complaint, any on-field matter is still subject to review by the match review committee,‘’ said NRL chief operating officer Graham Annesley.
"Until that process has been completed, the NRL won’t comment any further.‘’
Hannant’s manager, George Mimis, was also reluctant to comment.
"We had detailed dialogue yesterday and the club and Ben agreed they won’t be making any further comment,‘’ Mimis said.
The Bulldogs released a statement saying "no complaint’’ would be made.
Hannant was visibly upset at Gibbs’ comments, the two having to be separated by officials and players
Bryce has been one of the best on the field for us this year - a motor in attack and has showed ticker in defence.
It requires an inherent amount of bias, however, to blame anyone (i.e. the nrl, match review comm.) other then Bryce gibbs for this incident - if he did infact say these things. Lets not be blind to the fact that bryce Gibbs is responsible for his actions.
He’s not saying anything - and appears to be waiting for it to peeter out. If they find evidence from the recording, it certainly compounds the problemfor him.
He got off….
L: Gibbs escapes charge for alleged Hannant slur
Wests Tigers prop BRYCE GIBBS has escaped a charge for the
alleged religious slur he made against Canterbury’s BEN HANNANT in
the Bulldogs’ 24-4 NRL win on Friday night.
The Bulldogs made no formal complaint under the league’s
anti-vilification code, but the match review committee was
reportedly to listen to referees audio of the incident to determine
if any other action would be taken.
Canberra’s DAVID SHILLINGTON has been charged with a grade one
careless high tackle but will escape a ban.
Brisbane’s MATT GILLETT and the Warriors’ UKUMA TA’AI can also
escape suspension with early pleas after grade one charges.
AAP RTV dpb/gab