Photo emerges of James Roberts as NRL probes boxing appearance

Sam Goodwin
·Sports Editor
·3-min read
James Roberts, pictured here watching Tim Tszyu's fight against Dennis Hogan.
James Roberts wasn't wearing a mask as he watched Tim Tszyu's fight. Image: Fox Sports

Vision has emerged of James Roberts without a mask as the NRL investigates his presence at Tim Tszyu's boxing bout on Wednesday night.

The NRL has asked the Wests Tigers to explain why Roberts was in the crowd during Tszyu's fight with Dennis Hogan in Newcastle.

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The league is currently investigating whether a biosecurity breach occurred.

On Wednesday afternoon, all clubs were sent an email by the NRL warning players they should not attend the fight.

An exemption was granted for South Sydney duo Latrell Mitchell and Cody Walker to attend as part of Tszyu's entourage under the condition they wore masks and adhered to the COVID plan of the boxer's team.

However, Tigers centre Roberts was not granted the same exemption prior to attending the fight and on Thursday the NRL asked for a please explain.

Fox Sports has since published photos of Roberts watching on from the crowd while not wearing a mask.

Latrell Mitchell and Cody Walker, pictured here at Tim Tszyu's fight with Dennis Hogan.
Latrell Mitchell and Cody Walker watch on during Tim Tszyu's fight with Dennis Hogan. (AAP Image/Dan Himbrechts)

NRL players under level two restrictions

At the moment, all players are subject to level two restrictions under the NRL's biosecurity plan, meaning they must wear masks while indoors and avoid public transport.

Both Mitchell and Walker trained with the Rabbitohs on Thursday before their Good Friday clash with Canterbury, while Roberts is awaiting a possible sanction from the NRL.

Last year the NRL handed down a range of punishments for varied breaches of the league's biosecurity laws, including fines and suspensions.

Canterbury and Brisbane players are under the harshest restrictions since playing at Suncorp Stadium last Saturday, after which the city went into a three-day lockdown.

Bulldogs players have been tested for COVID-19 and are expected to be cleared before they play the Rabbitohs on Friday afternoon at Stadium Australia.

James Roberts, pictured here before the Wests Tigers' clash with the Roosters.
James Roberts looks on before the Wests Tigers' clash with the Roosters. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

Broncos and Titans relocated to Sydney

The Queensland government announced on Thursday it was lifting the lockdown restrictions from noon, which has alleviated some doubt about whether Magic Round would go ahead at Suncorp Stadium in round 10.

The Broncos and Gold Coast sides have also been relocated to Sydney for the time being.

The Broncos are set to fly in and out of Melbourne on Good Friday for their clash with the Storm, which starts a fortnight of away games for the club.

However, Broncos coach Kevin Walters said he expects the team to be able to return to Brisbane after they play South Sydney at Stadium Australia next Thursday.

"All indications are that we'll be here for at least another week for the South Sydney game so we're comfortable with that," he said.

"We've been told by the NRL just to get through this weekend's game and they'll have more information for us over the weekend as to next week's game against Souths and then on to the Panthers.

"Obviously we'd dearly like to be playing (the Panthers) game at Suncorp.

"It's a huge advantage for us to be playing at Suncorp Stadium and we expect that that game, when it does take place, will be at our home venue."

with AAP

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