Explosive new details have emerged of Manly's Addin Fonua-Blake directing a second shocking spray at NRL match officials in the wake of the Sea Eagles' controversial loss to Newcastle on Sunday.
The NRL's head of football Graham Annesley on Monday admitted that Manly should have been awarded a last-minute penalty that could have forced golden point against the Knights.
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Sea Eagles players and fans were left fuming after not being awarded a penalty when winger Tevita Funa was pushed in the back by Bradman Best while chasing his own kick.
Fonua-Blake was sent from the field after the siren at Lottoland for an expletive-laden blow-up in the immediate aftermath of the 14-12 defeat.
Television audio clearly picked up the Sea Eagles prop calling referee Grant Atkins a "f***ing retard" before he was marched from the field.
On Monday, Fonua-Blake was issued with a grade-three contrary conduct charge, meaning he can escape with a two-game ban if he pleads guilty.
However, ARL Commission chairman Peter V’landys has now suggested that penalty could be even more severe, with reports emerging of a second verbal attack coming from the Manly star in the tunnels after full-time.
According to 2GB radio's Mark Levy, Fonua-Blake “had a second go at the whistleblower in the tunnel, which was seen and heard by NRL and club officials”.
Veteran broadcaster Ray Hadley obtained a copy of referee Atkins' report which was sent to NRL HQ after the match, in which the Manly forward is accused of saying: “Are your eyes f***ing painted on you bunch of spastics?”
V'landys insisted that it was the ARLC's responsibility to set an example by coming down hard on players showing dissent towards the match officials.
“It’s inexcusable,” V’landys told the Sydney Morning Herald.
“As I’ve said many times, what these players have to understand is they are role models.
“They have a non-negotiable duty. A young kid would’ve watched that and gone to school and abused a kid who is disadvantaged. To me, that’s intolerable.
“We’re not going lightly on it. If we do, as a commission, we might as well walk away.”
Channel Nine league reporter Danny Weidler suggested that the NRL was keen to slap the Manly star with a heavier penalty than the one he received.
LAtEST: NRL have contacted Manly and want to take the Addin Fonua- Blake matter further after Ray Hadley’s revelation of a second disgusting outburst. Be sure the heads of the game Peter V’landys and Andrew Abdo are fuming. @9NewsSyd @NRLonNine— Danny Weidler (@Danny_Weidler) July 6, 2020
Calls for heavier penalty for Manly star
Daily Telegraph reporter and Fox Sports' NRL 360 host Paul Kent also argued that Fonua-Blake's suspension was too lenient.
“James Graham had a go at (referee) Gerard Sutton where he did that (confronted the referee and pointed in his face) but he didn’t swear at him and he didn’t insult him with a name. And he got four weeks and took the early plea to get it down to three,” Kent said on Monday night.
“Steve Roach, when he patted Eddie Ward on the head, got a five thousand dollar fine and four weeks.
“This guy (Fonua-Blake) calls the referee an effing retard, and then when the referee says ‘you’ve been sent, go’, he says ‘eff off’ and he gets two weeks. How have they handled that well?”
The contrite Manly firebrand immediately apologised after coming off the field, and again later in a statement issued by his NRL club.
"Referees have a very tough job and we all need to respect their decisions even when we may not agree with them," Fonua-Blake said.
"I should not have let my emotions get the better of me and I am very sorry for the comments I made.
"I'd also like to offer my sincere apology to anyone offended by the regrettable language that I used.
"I let myself and my club down. That is not who I am or what this club stands for."