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EagleEyePie

Another Wigan player...

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...charged with drink driving!

This time Taulima Tautai.

Stopped by police while almost twice the legal limit at 4am in the morning after the Magic Weekend loss to Wire.

3 players charged with drink driving in the space of 8 months, one facing a ban for using prohibited substances (and if it turns out to be recreational you can bet alcohol was involved there). There's also Joel and Sam Tomkins' vile outbursts while drunk. Looking further back there's also Bateman and Mossop coming to blows after a day of drinking at an event.

I think it's fair to say that there's an issue and something needs to be done about it. Yes, there are issues at other clubs but these incidents are coming with alarming regularity and it's only a few months since Kris Radlinski commented saying the club do all they can to educate players and trying to play down the clubs responsibility for off field behaviour while banging on about 'driving a strong culture'. If this is the club 'driving a strong culture' then someone is drunk at the wheel.

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Clearly a rotten culture at the club. Surely Lenegan/Radlinski have to take some sort of responsibility and take action to resolve it?

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These incidents seem to have become more frequent since Lenagan stepped down from the day to day running of the club and left it up to Radlinski. That's not to say that this is all his Rads' fault. He does have a point to say that the players should be responsible for their actions but if several players are getting caught drink driving in such a short space of time it suggests the steps they are taking to educate players aren't working successfully. It's not happening at other clubs to the same degree. It's Radlinski who is supposed to bridge the gap between players, coaches and directors. His comments about having a strong culture continue to look ridiculous the more things like this are allowed to continue.

There needs to be an alcohol ban in my opinion. I know players should be viewed as adults and trusted to look after themselves but when several players start letting the club down due to alcohol related incidents it's clearly time to take a strong stance against it and ban it during the season. These are athletes after all and not allowing players to binge drink will have other obvious benefits.

They also should be giving appropriate punishments. Bateman got suspended for 8 matches for his off field indiscretion. It was a clear and decisive punishment. For me drink driving is a more serious matter, but Hardaker wasn't suspended (despite it happening shortly after a seminar on the dangers of alcohol abuse) and was parachuted straight into the side. Craig Mullen wasn't suspended and instead has simply been quietly frozen out (which is both an unsuitable punishment but also worse than what happened to Hardaker).

Now is probably the time to ignore previous punishments and take a stand. Tautai should be suspended. More important than punishing the players though is investigating the culture. Understanding why he was out drinking at that time after a game. Find out what players are getting up to and put a stop to it before one of our players gets behind the wheel after a night out and ends someone's life. Maybe a few players have serious issues and need help but absolving them from responsibility or sweeping things under the carpet won't help. There's a clear problem at the club.

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1 hour ago, andyscoot said:

Clearly a rotten culture at the club. Surely Lenegan/Radlinski have to take some sort of responsibility and take action to resolve it?

Maybe the people involved should take some responsibility . 

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11 minutes ago, henage said:

Maybe the people involved should take some responsibility . 

That goes without saying, surely? But how many players can you have step out of line and punish them independently without looking above them and questioning the culture at the club?

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As long as they drink from a bottle, you spill a lot less going round the corners.🤨

 

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At this rate we'll be signing  Taumalolo,Pongia & Sam Burgess with the money saved on club cars !

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Completely ban alcohol consumption in-season and educate the players on the perils of drink driving and the grave consequences involved (though as has been mentioned, they shouldn't need to be educated).

I have zero time for anyone who drinks and drives.

I'd also suggest placing a severe penalty on anyone convicted of drink driving.

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27 minutes ago, EastLondonMike said:

Completely ban alcohol consumption in-season and educate the players on the perils of drink driving and the grave consequences involved (though as has been mentioned, they shouldn't need to be educated).

I have zero time for anyone who drinks and drives.

I'd also suggest placing a severe penalty on anyone convicted of drink driving.

The stuff about drink driving I fully agree with. Clubs should come down like a tonne or bricks on anyone who is convicted of it. But banning all alcohol in season is unrealistic imo and will create its own problems.

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Wigan Today reporting that it's likely Tautai will be deported. He's believed to have applied for a settlement visa to live in the UK permanently as his 'Sportsperson' visa expired after 6 years. His application could be blocked by the Home Office due to his conviction.

Serious consequences for him but he only has himself to blame.

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53 minutes ago, EagleEyePie said:

Wigan Today reporting that it's likely Tautai will be deported. He's believed to have applied for a settlement visa to live in the UK permanently as his 'Sportsperson' visa expired after 6 years. His application could be blocked by the Home Office due to his conviction.

Serious consequences for him but he only has himself to blame.

Can’t argue with that.

In most countries you need to fully prove your value to that country if you want the benefits of citizenship.   Hopefully it will be a hard lesson that he takes home with him and makes him a better citizen there.   We all make mistakes, but there are consequences that we must live with.

Edited by Cheshire Setter

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8 minutes ago, Cheshire Setter said:

Can’t argue with that.

In most countries you need to fully prove your value to that country if you want the benefits of citizenship.   Hopefully it will be a hard lesson that he takes home with him and makes him a better citizen there.   We all make mistakes, but there are consequences that we must live with.

I feel for his family. I'm pretty sure he has at least one child and the fact he was applying to stay permanently suggests they were settled here.

I do hope he gets support because despite being an idiot (twice, since he was charged for DD in 2009 too) if he's deported that's a big upheaval for him and his family and a lot of pressure to potentially lose his main source of income and have his life and plans completely altered. He deserves to be punished for his stupidity but there's obviously a limit to how much someone should suffer.

Not sure what his chances are of gaining citizenship now but he is one of the most active in terms of community work which might count in his favour.

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1 hour ago, Sir Kevin Sinfield said:

A club in crisis 

That must make you happy. 


Four legs good - two legs bad

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5 hours ago, EagleEyePie said:

These incidents seem to have become more frequent since Lenagan stepped down from the day to day running of the club and left it up to Radlinski. That's not to say that this is all his Rads' fault. He does have a point to say that the players should be responsible for their actions but if several players are getting caught drink driving in such a short space of time it suggests the steps they are taking to educate players aren't working successfully. It's not happening at other clubs to the same degree. It's Radlinski who is supposed to bridge the gap between players, coaches and directors. His comments about having a strong culture continue to look ridiculous the more things like this are allowed to continue.

There needs to be an alcohol ban in my opinion. I know players should be viewed as adults and trusted to look after themselves but when several players start letting the club down due to alcohol related incidents it's clearly time to take a strong stance against it and ban it during the season. These are athletes after all and not allowing players to binge drink will have other obvious benefits.

They also should be giving appropriate punishments. Bateman got suspended for 8 matches for his off field indiscretion. It was a clear and decisive punishment. For me drink driving is a more serious matter, but Hardaker wasn't suspended (despite it happening shortly after a seminar on the dangers of alcohol abuse) and was parachuted straight into the side. Craig Mullen wasn't suspended and instead has simply been quietly frozen out (which is both an unsuitable punishment but also worse than what happened to Hardaker).

Now is probably the time to ignore previous punishments and take a stand. Tautai should be suspended. More important than punishing the players though is investigating the culture. Understanding why he was out drinking at that time after a game. Find out what players are getting up to and put a stop to it before one of our players gets behind the wheel after a night out and ends someone's life. Maybe a few players have serious issues and need help but absolving them from responsibility or sweeping things under the carpet won't help. There's a clear problem at the club.

Pathetic prejudicial garbage.  

Ignorant is not the word to cover it. Hardaker for instance was not "parachuted" into the side. His conviction was in Sept 2018!  Remind me when the season starts?  He then went into a long rehabilitation course. 

Slavering over an old bone just about covers your opinions.

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20 minutes ago, Rupert Prince said:

Pathetic prejudicial garbage.  

Ignorant is not the word to cover it. Hardaker for instance was not "parachuted" into the side. His conviction was in Sept 2018!  Remind me when the season starts?  He then went into a long rehabilitation course. 

Slavering over an old bone just about covers your opinions.

Taking a step back and looking at the bigger picture though, EEP has a fair point in that he wants his club to take a stance and set an example.   Wigan needs to decide whether it wants to be a community-focussed club with it's players acting as role models, or just a corporate machine.   The club recruited Hardaker knowing his multiple convictions and (purely IMO) should be seen to be showing the fans that it won't let such behaviour (such as Hardaker's subsequent DD incident) be tolerated.   Sending players on rehabilitation courses after endless misbehaviour doesn't really sit well with parents of potential future Wigan fans I'm sure.   I think it's different than football in that we're very family-focussed and everything is usually centred around supporting your home town team.

Maybe it is time for a fresh sweep through and that means a bit of leadership right from the top.   Send a message out that if you want to be part of what used to be THE club of British RL then you buy into the ethos of responsibility and leadership representing the town's team.

I admire the fact EEP isn't just making excuses for the club.

Edited by Cheshire Setter

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30 minutes ago, Rupert Prince said:

Pathetic prejudicial garbage.  

Ignorant is not the word to cover it. Hardaker for instance was not "parachuted" into the side. His conviction was in Sept 2018!  Remind me when the season starts?  He then went into a long rehabilitation course. 

Slavering over an old bone just about covers your opinions.

I'm not sure why your response is quite so irate but I'll still respond. While Hardaker was convicted in Sept 2018 there was nothing stopping him from being handed a suspension to start at the beginning of the season. That way the precedent was set and when Craig Mullen was convicted of drink driving he'd also receive that suspension.

I don't like drink drivers very much. I don't think clubs (and that goes beyond Wigan) take a tough enough stance regarding those who are convicted. Given it was one of many misdemeanors from Hardaker I feel like the club didn't really do the severity of the offence justice when handing out a punishment.

With regards to him being 'parachuted' into the first team. There was competition for the fullback spot but Hardaker was immediately considered first choice before ever having played a game for the club and having committed a serious offence just a few weeks into his Wigan career. 

As Cheshire Setter said, I want the club to take a strong stance on drink driving. While I understand they can't watch over players 24/7 and they are ultimately responsible for their own actions I think the club should also make it very clear they don't want people who think it's okay to drink and drive playing for the club. I don't think that's an unreasonable position for the club to take.

At times it feels like the club engages more and more frequently in damage limitation and attempts to brush things under the carpet.

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The club is bringing the game into ill repute with their constant failure to keep control of their assets not to mention their finances, they should have a 4 points deduction for this season with anther 4 suspended for next year, maybe that would wake them up to get their house in order. 

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18 minutes ago, Exiled Wiganer said:

I must say, you have to admire the speed at which these high horses can be jumped onto.

It’s not really a high horse thing or a dig at your club in particular EW, I think it’s just that it’s becoming a bit too commonplace, especially when it’s related to something that’s really quite serious.   Drink-driving has far reaching effects on normal people like you and me, unlike taking recreational drugs or performance enhancing steroids.   It’s bound to wind people up a bit more on here.

Also, this rotten culture does seem to be affecting Wigan a bit more than other clubs at the moment.   If it was Warrington I’d want it sorted straight away.

Edited by Cheshire Setter

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I'd say it's a drinking culture among rugby players more than a rotten culture in particular at Wigan. I just don't think you can say that the club are treating it as seriously as other drink related incidents.

Joel Tomkins was suspended for 4 matches and fined for drunkenly abusing a barmaid. Bateman was suspended for 8 matches and fined for his alleged assault on a teammate. No criminal charges were brought in either of those incidents. Hardaker and Mullen were caught drink driving and neither received a ban from the club. There was no mention of any fine for Hardaker. I read that Mullen received a £1000 fine.

I don't think there's a 4 match difference in severity between abusing someone while drunk and getting behind the wheel of a car while drunk and endangering the lives of people. In fact I think the latter is much more serious.

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21 minutes ago, EagleEyePie said:

I'd say it's a drinking culture among rugby players more than a rotten culture in particular at Wigan. I just don't think you can say that the club are treating it as seriously as other drink related incidents.

Joel Tomkins was suspended for 4 matches and fined for drunkenly abusing a barmaid. Bateman was suspended for 8 matches and fined for his alleged assault on a teammate. No criminal charges were brought in either of those incidents. Hardaker and Mullen were caught drink driving and neither received a ban from the club. There was no mention of any fine for Hardaker. I read that Mullen received a £1000 fine.

I don't think there's a 4 match difference in severity between abusing someone while drunk and getting behind the wheel of a car while drunk and endangering the lives of people. In fact I think the latter is much more serious.

The difference is probably just that when the Tomkins incident happened Wigan he’d to buy themselves some time to let the heat die down. Where as with the drink drive incidents they can go with the old letting the police conclude their investigation first 

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God knows what's in them pies 

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