Nathan Cleary showed class when dealing with the latest development he had been deducted six Dally M points for his role in the Tik Tok saga, but NRL legend Billy Slater has slammed the ruling as ‘ridiculous’.
Back in May, a remorseful Cleary described his actions as “irresponsible, selfish and pretty stupid” after a video emerged of the Penrith star in TikTok videos with a group of women during the coronavirus pandemic shutdown.
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The NRL investigated the incident and imposed a two-game ban and $30,000 fine on the star.
However, the NRL has now admitted to a blunder in its Dally M calculations in relation to his suspension.
Cleary was sitting just two points behind Dally M leader Harry Grant when voting went behind closed doors.
But the NRL announced they forgot to subtract three points from his tally for every week he was suspended [after he started accumulating points], per Dally M rules.
This meant Cleary discovered he lost six points from his total.
But the Penrith star was classy in his reaction to the news.
“I just got sent an article about it this morning, but at the end of the day it was my stuff up so I’ve got to take any repercussions from that,” Cleary told Nine’s 100% Footy.
“It’s just one of those things.”
Billy Slater slams Dally M ruling
But the deduction didn’t sit well with Slater, arguably the game’s greatest ever fullback, with a similar incident costing him the Dally M during his career.
“It’s the best and fairest, and I can understand a suspension on the field occurring three deduction points for every week you’re suspended for,” Slater told 2GB Radio.
“But to take two opportunities for him to accumulate points and then hit him with six points deducted as well, I think that’s unfair. It’s close to home for me.
“I ran second in the Dally M by two points and I got suspended for one week that year, and had three points deducted off me.
“So I know how he’s feeling. But my situation was different it was an on-field issue, this is an off-field issue. It’s got nothing to do with the best and the fairest…I think it’s ridiculous.”
The Panthers CEO, Brian Fletcher, shared Slater’s sentiment that the penalty seem too harsh for the in-form playmaker.