Andrew Fifita and Semi Radradra have both been overlooked for the Australian Four Nations squad, the pair deemed ineligible for Test selection because of off-field problems.
NRL chief executive Todd Greenberg made the call to strike a line through their names, while coach Mal Meninga has decided to end the representative careers of veteran forwards Corey Parker and Paul Gallen.
Fifita was not considered for the 24-man squad, with the NRL Integrity Unit investigating an incident in which he wrote a message of support for convicted one-punch killer Kieran Loveridge on his arm.
The hulking prop was the match-winner in Cronulla’s grand final triumph, and while Meninga admitted he was one of the best front rowers in the country, Fifita had not lived up to the lofty standards of the national side.
“In Andrew’s case, selection for the Australian team requires standards on and off the field and as he is currently under investigation by the integrity unit, we believe he still has some way to go to meet those off field standards,” Greenberg said.
Radradra was not considered as he awaits trial on domestic violence charges.
Greenberg said the Parramatta winger’s focus should be the resolution of his legal problems.
Meninga said he was forced to make the difficult decision to drop Sharks and NSW skipper Gallen and retiring Broncos captain Corey Parker, denying the two veteran back-rowrers green and gold swansongs.
“They’ve been great servants to the green and gold jersey but we move on and look to the future,” Meninga said.
Meninga named seven debutants in the group with Jake Friend, Shannon Boyd, Tyson Frizell, Valentine Holmes, James Maloney, Matt Moylan and Justin O’Neill in line for their international debuts.
The Australian side for the October 15 Test against New Zealand at Perth’s nib Stadium will come from the players in the squad.