Titans' Fotuaika free to face Cowboys

Matt Encarnacion and Ed Jackson
Titan Moeaki Fotuaika can play when the NRL resumes after getting off a dangerous contact charge

Gold Coast prop Moeaki Fotuaika is free to face North Queensland next week after being found not guilty of dangerous contact at the NRL judiciary.

Fotuaika risked a one-game suspension for his shot on Parramatta star Mitchell Moses in their round-two match before the season was suspended by COVID-19.

Fotuaika was hit with a grade-one dangerous contact charge for the 30th minute incident, which came after Moses passed the ball on the last tackle.

However a three-person panel on Tuesday night found the 20-year-old not guilty, freeing him to face the Cowboys when the season resumes next week.

The hearing was the first to be challenged at the NRL judiciary this season, as well as the first under the new coronavirus guidelines.

The new conditions stipulate that all players challenging charges will appear via video link, while judiciary representatives could also appear remotely.

Fotuaika's inclusion for the Titans is a huge boost for coach Justin Holbrook, who is already without boom fullback AJ Brimson indefinitely due to injury.

Gold Coast prop Shannon Boyd admitted he was unaware of the hearing given the incident occurred almost eight weeks ago.

"Hopefully he gets off. I don't remember what tackle he did, or what he did wrong. Was it a high shot or a shoulder charge?" Boyd said earlier on Tuesday.

"It's a bit weird, it's sort of like we've had an off-season and come back in to a pre-season. It's all a bit disjointed but I didn't even realise he was on that charge."

Newcastle star Kalyn Ponga (one game) and Eels lock Nathan Brown (two games) were the only players banned from round two incidents.