Manly lash out at NRL match-fixing claims

Manly have lashed out at allegations two of their NRL matches from the 2015 season are being investigated for match-fixing.

In a statement released on Friday, Sea Eagles chairman Scott Penn and chief executive Joe Kelly assured its stakeholders they would co-operate with any probe surrounding the cooking of games.

The club also stressed they had yet to be contacted by NSW police, and were upset with initial reports that two fixtures involving their NRL team are in the spotlight.

“It is bitterly disappointed that the club’s hard-earned 70-year reputation for fair play has been unfairly tarnished by imputations raised by some media outlets involving two Sea Eagles matches last season, albeit there is presently no formal investigation,” the statement read.

Manly also said they endorsed NRL boss Todd Greenberg’s threat of life bans for any player or official found guilty of match-fixing and promised to be open with fans with any further developments.

“The Sea Eagles fully support the strong stance by NRL CEO Todd Greenberg that any player found guilty of match-fixing be banned for life,” the statement said.

“We will continue to support our players one hundred per cent and give them the presumption of innocence, particularly against unfair mainstream and social media innuendo.”

Sea Eagles coach Trent Barrett has already addressed the situation with his players before Friday’s NRL clash against Canberra in the nation’s capital.

A win over the Raiders would lift the Brookvale-based team back into top-eight contention.

“All I have said to them is ignore it,” Barrett told the Seven Network.

“They are professionals and we have a job to do. Where we sit on the competition table, this is an extremely important game for us.

“It is not ideal. We would rather it not be around the whole game. It isn’t ideal but the one thing we can control is guest to block it out, stick together and win for the Manly football club.”

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