Eels’ Radradra fronts court, then trains

Parramatta players continue to stand by embattled teammate Semi Radradra after the Eels winger faced court for the first time for domestic violence.

The Eels winger made a brief appearance at Parramatta Local Court on Tuesday, pleading not guilty to three counts of domestic violence before immediately ducking off to training.

Eels forward David Gower said Radradra trained strongly upon return.

“He was good. Obviously extenuating circumstances for him but he knows when he gets to training he’s got to do a job for us and he did that today at training,” Gower said.

“My understanding is that he’s pleaded not guilty and as far as we’re concerned and as far as the game needs to be concerned, it’s innocent until proven guilty.

“And when the time comes for the court case, the appropriate steps will be taken.”

Prop Danny Wicks, who spent 18 months in jail after being found guilty of trafficking drugs before rebuilding his rugby league career, said Radradra deserved his day in court.

“It’s an allegation at the moment so I think he deserves the presumption of innocence until being found guilty,” Wicks said.

“I’ve run into trouble myself through my career so I know, I didn’t want to talk about it to anyone. I give him the respect and space.”

Radradra will remain on bail until his matter returns to court on August 16, but will not be required to face court in person on that occasion.

His court appearance comes just a week before Eels teammate Corey Norman is due to front court for possessing a prohibited drug and prescribed restricted substance at The Star Casino in May.

The NRL is also expected to hand down its final ruling on Parramatta’s salary cap breach in the same week, with the Eels likely to lose 12 competition points, all but ruling them out of finals contention.

Despite the drawn-out process, Gower said the team was prepared to fall down the ladder.

“As far as everyone’s concerned, it’s 12 points unless we’re told otherwise,” he said.

“It’s taking it’s time, but you’d rather it have gone through due process rather than rush into a decision. We’re playing under the assumption that we’re going to lose 12 and if we don’t, so be it.

“But we just need to let that take its due process and see how we go at the end of it.”

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