Sydney Morning Herald (Fairfax):
Despite being given the green light by NRL chief executive Dave Smith to resume interviews with Cronulla players after a legal dispute over the level of co-operation provided by Wade Graham, ASADA has advised the Sharks' lawyers they do not plan to do so.
The shock move fuelled speculation in league circles on Sunday that ASADA was either close to laying charges against players or conceding defeat in the doping scandal, but Fairfax Media was told the investigation would continue.
However, ASADA will now focus more on other lines of inquiry as the first interview with Graham proved fruitless and investigators believe their resources can be better utilised elsewhere.
''Nothing has really changed since the interviews stopped with Graham except that ASADA has been out doing other things instead of waiting for the players,'' a source told Fairfax Media. ''ASADA remains ready to interview any player who wants to come forward and co-operate but they won't be doing interviews that aren't useful.''
The decision not to resume the player interviews is set to drag out the scandal, and there are genuine fears that it won't be resolved before the end of the season.
ASADA said they were going to interview a whole raft of players, many from Sharks. For whatever reason - see above and elsewhere - Sharks players, through their legal representatives, have been told they are not now going to be interviewed, according to this source.
So they have changed their stance. They won't be calling players to interview. They are waiting for whistle-blowers and volunteers to come forward. This according to the Herald is set to stretch matters on and on.
Relative to their stance of not long ago I think that's a significant change.
We want them to get to the truth.
Maybe their approach has been too bull at a gate to start with, or maybe they hoped they'd shock people to confess and take their enticement.
As Bourbon Rat suggests some players will have used performance enhancing drugs.
ASADA have said this has happened.
They have to prove this now which is far more difficult.
Their original approach suggested relatively quick action.
So maybe they have got a number of players banged to rights already or maybe they haven't.
If they have then we should hear very shortly.
The feeling broadly in the media is that we should expect this to drag out.
A quieter approach? Whatever. What we want is to get this sorted out properly however long it takes.
Edited by G Las D, 13 May 2013 - 08:24 AM.