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Cronulla Sharks sign major sponsor

Cronulla Sharks League News

Date July 3, 2014

 

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Cronulla Sharks have had some good news at the end of a week to forget. Photo: Getty Images

NRL club Cronulla has finally attracted a major sponsor - ironically, it seems, as a direct result of their woes on and off the field.

Labour Health, whose services include conducting drug and alcohol testing in workplaces throughout Australia, has reportedly committed to paying a six-figure sum to feature on the front of the Sharks' jersey for the remaining 10 weeks of the season and possibly next year.

The sponsorship will start with Saturday night's clash with the Sydney Roosters at Allianz Stadium.

It's a commercial agreement that clashes starkly with the traditional sports marketing mantra that companies should align themselves with clean-cut and stable brands.

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The Sharks of 2014 are anything but.

In the last week, Cronulla five-eighth Todd Carney was sacked after an unsavoury image of the star playmaker at a nightclub urinal went viral on social media.

Then interim head coach Peter Sharp, who was replacing the banned Shane Flanagan, resigned.

And the dark shadow of ASADA's investigation continues to hang over The Shire club, who are last on the NRL ladder despite a shock come-from-behind win over Brisbane last round.

But all that hasn't fazed Labour Health managing director Regan Brown, who was asked whether he agreed that the company's decision would shock most people.

"I couldn't agree with you more," Brown told News Limited. "And that's why were coming in to help. We know what we're doing."

The Sharks have been without a major sponsor since 2012.

 

Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/rugby-league/league-news/cronulla-sharks-sign-major-sponsor-20140703-zsvc0.html#ixzz36RjQZvkr

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Cronulla Sharks sponsorship in jeopardy over drug testing demands

Cronulla Sharks League News

Date July 15, 2014 - 12:01AM   Chris Barrett
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Deal-breaker? Cronulla sponsors Labour Health want to oversee drug and alcohol testing of Sharks players - but that is against NRL rules. Photo: Getty Images

Cronulla's new major sponsors want to begin testing Sharks players for recreational drug and alcohol use this season and have signalled they may end their newfound alliance with the club if they are not permitted to do so.

Labour Health signed on as the club's main backer in the wake of Todd Carney's sacking last month following the release on social media of a disturbing photo of the five-eighth taken during a night out in Cronulla.

The new sponsors, whose primary business is conducting drug and alcohol tests at workplaces, say they invested in Cronulla on the condition of implementing their own screening regime at the last-placed NRL club.

Labour Health general manager Regan Brown told Fairfax Media on Monday he hoped to begin an "internal control" at training sessions in the final rounds of this year's premiership. 

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"What we want to do is implement it before the end of the season - it might be the final four or five rounds - and we'd sort of go down there once a week just to get it in," Brown said.

"And after the initial shock of it being implemented, maybe just once a month. It's a discipline thing that once incorporated people must abide by, and the culture of the club will strengthen around that. If we find that everything is squeaky clean, you don't need to be down there every day."

However, Cronulla were reminded by the NRL on Monday that clubs were not allowed to conduct their own testing for illicit drugs, a League Central policy that places the Sharks' new partnership in jeopardy less than a fortnight after it was announced. The NRL's testing is done by Laverty Pathology, who are now also monitoring whether there is an issue with the abuse of prescription drugs by players.

"Clubs are prohibited from conducting their own in-house testing for illicit drugs," an NRL spokesman said. "The NRL contracts a major pathology company to conduct uniform tests across all clubs. This ensures there is consistency for every player and every club.

"That arrangement is in place for the next one to two years however that's not to say that other companies won't be invited to tender for such work in the future."

Labour Health joined as major sponsors for the rest of the season following Carney's sacking with the intention of drawing up a new drug and alcohol policy and undertaking random screening of players.

Their connection with the Sharks beyond this season would appear to be in doubt if they can't showcase their services as they desire. 

"We had an informal discussion during the process of the negotiation that was around coming in and updating their drug and alcohol policy and putting our best foot forward to show corporate Australia about what we can do," Brown said. 

"If we can't actually put our best foot forward it makes it not as attractive. That was the reason we got on board, that's all I can say.

"I want my company out there as the leading drug and alcohol testing company for businesses and organisations in Australia, not just to be the Sharkies' No.1 supporter. As much as I love them, I'm not in the business of giving my money away because I'm in love with the Sharks."

Brown has ambitions to have his company conduct illicit drug and alcohol testing at more than one club.

He identified the Sharks, having cut ties with Carney over an alcohol-related incident, as the launching pad.

"The Sharks have suffered from the exposure of its personnel who are affected by drugs and alcohol," he says on his Linkedin page.

Brown added on Monday: "Footy clubs are all about the families and the supporters and the kids as well as the sponsors and the sponsors don't want to have their names all over the press for the wrong reasons. That was why the Sharks struggled having sponsors."

Cronulla have been simultaneously waiting to hear from the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority for an update on its long-running investigation into their 2011 supplements program. 

"We're excited about the new corporate partners that have come on board in challenging times," Cronulla chief executive Steve Noyce said. "Obviously these people have a strong desire and passion to help the club out, not just financially in terms of the sponsorship, but to help us build a strong culture.

"But at the same time the club are aware of NRL rules regarding certain aspects of testing. We need to work with the NRL and hopefully there might be opportunities for our corporate partners to be part of the solution for the game."  

Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/rugby-league/league-news/cronulla-sharks-sponsorship-in-jeopardy-over-drug-testing-demands-20140714-zt6uq.html#ixzz37UdLzpML

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How fucken hopeless are the Sharks board of directors !!

 

They enter into a deal with their new sponsor ....desperate enough, to agree to anything

 

only to find out what they've agreed to is against the rules of the governing body that they play within.

 

Seriously......someone needs to run a broom through the joint starting from the top down. 

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Or, you could consider the NRL's position as being the stupid one. The company contracted to do the testing by the NRL, still does the testing it is contracted to do. The Shark's sponsor then do their testing as supplementary to the NRL sanctioned test, but for in house use.

 

So we then have the situation where the Sharks become the most rigorously tested side in rugby league, and probably the the most in any footy code in the country. Which would be a good move forward given the weight of the ASADA investigation that still hangs over the club

 

It shows them as being pro-active,  The only real problem I see with that, is the players would need to grant consent for such extra testing, and should not be forced to do so 

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Or, you could consider the NRL's position as being the stupid one. The company contracted to do the testing by the NRL, still does the testing it is contracted to do. The Shark's sponsor then do their testing as supplementary to the NRL sanctioned test, but for in house use.

 

So we then have the situation where the Sharks become the most rigorously tested side in rugby league, and probably the the most in any footy code in the country. Which would be a good move forward given the weight of the ASADA investigation that still hangs over the club

 

It shows them as being pro-active,  The only real problem I see with that, is the players would need to grant consent for such extra testing, and should not be forced to do so 

 

Agree it's farcical of the NRL .....it's not like the Sharks ONLY want to do in-house testing. They are simply adding it to the existing NRL policy and as you point out, regarding the Sharks, extra drug testing can't be a bad thing. That said......surely the Sharks board knew the position of the NRL before talking to/agreeing with their new sponsors terms. 

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As offensive as the photo may be, it needs to remain to serve as a stark reminder for us of the kind of degenerate behaviour that occurs in most NSW based clubs. 

 

Lest we forget.....

 

Fair call. To put it bluntly though, I'm sick of seeing Carney's cock. Clearly you aren't and that's fine....

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