Just when Victor Radley thought he might get to enjoy a peaceful Christmas, the NRL's Integrity Unit could upset his festive season as the probe into his pub skirmish with Ireland's James Bentley intensifies. England's governing body – the Rugby Football League - has employed an independent investigator to look into Radley's altercation with Bentley at a pub in Worsley as England players wound down after last month's World Cup.
Radley played for England and was one of its stand-out players after turning his back on the NSW Blues and Australia to play for the country of his father's birth. There were reports a headbutt was used when Radley attempted to move Bentley away from the England gathering, although it's unclear whether the Roosters star was the aggressor or the victim.
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The pub has no CCTV of the incident and there were no reports of property damage nor was any member of the general public involved.
With the venue not able to offer any assistance and players scattering to all parts of the globe following the World Cup – on top of sorting out whose jurisdiction the matter fell under - the investigation has been going at snail's pace.
But with the NRL's Integrity Unit awaiting the result of the findings and becoming increasingly agitated by the drawn-out process, the RFL has stepped things up by bringing in outside help to interview all parties.
Victor Radley investigation set to ramp up
The NRL has refused to comment on the incident but a source with knowledge of the investigation told Yahoo Sport Australia: "It's never been case closed from the NRL's end. The RFL never gave a timeline for the investigation to finish and the NRL has been the one having to push for things to be finalised.
"It should move a little quicker now the RLF has hired a private investigator and the relevant parties are back from their breaks. You'd think the result of the findings would be known fairly soon."
Radley could face a ban and miss the start of next season if the NRL deems his actions brought the game in disrepute. That's despite several reports the Roosters hardman was not the instigator and was simply protecting members of the England squad.
Trent Robinson's side will travel to Brisbane to play competition newcomers the Dolphins in the first round of the 2023 NRL season.
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