Fifita brothers to front Cronulla board

Andrew Fifita and his brother David will learn their fates over their run in with a junior referee when they face the Cronulla board on Thursday.

The pair has been stood down indefinitely by the Sharks after they allegedly abused an official following a Penrith District A-grade match last week.

Both have been banned from the Penrith competition for 12 months and on Tuesday Andrew failed in his bid to have his penalty reduced.

Their suspension by the Penrith District Junior Rugby League Association has put Cronulla under pressure to hit the pair with a hefty penalty and suspension.

Andrew has denied some of the allegations and it has been reported he told a referee “I’ll smash you” after David and the official became involved in an argument.

Cronulla skipper Paul Gallen earlier in the week said he would support a four-game ban and $50,000 fine for the brothers.

Andrew’s record of off-field incidents will be factored into the boards’ decision. Last year he was fined $10,000 for abusing a photographer during a Mad Monday incident and was investigated over an alleged road-rage attack.

The Sharks are fifth and knocking on the door of a top four finish but face a test of their credentials against North Queensland on Saturday night.

Already without veteran forward Luke Lewis, who is out with a knee injury until round 24, utility Ben Barba admits the loss of the Fifita brothers would be deeply felt at an important time of year.

“The quicker we get it resolved the quicker we get Andrew and David back,” Barba said.

“I think everyone’s just waiting to see what the punishment is but someone needs to come forward and get this process on a roll.

“Because we need them two back.”

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