By Steve Jancetic
Brett Seymour's NRL career is on the scrapheap after Cronulla became the second club in the last four years to sack the 24-year-old for repeated alcohol-related incidents.
In a sign clubs are fed up with having their reputations tarnished by players' off-field antics, the Sharks sacked serial offender Seymour following a late night drinking session at a Cronulla nightspot at the weekend.
Despite being in an alcohol rehabilitation program after a drinking binge earlier this year landed him a $20,000 fine and a two-match suspension, a heavily-intoxicated Seymour was asked to leave the licensed premises.
Enough was finally enough with the Sharks tearing up his contract, just as Brisbane did in 2006 following one off-field incident too many.
"Brett had been served with two previous breaches, the club has worked very closely with him with counselling and support and sometimes you draw a line in the sand," Sharks chief executive Richard Fisk said.
"We made it very clear that the club was going to become transparent under its new board and we had to make the decision.
"We did see an improvement, he was in rehab, but when you're in rehab you're not out till 12 o'clock at night on a Sunday night and overindulging."
The NRL moved swiftly to block any move to another club, chief executive David Gallop adamant Seymour would have to prove he was working to overcome his problems before thought was given to allowing him back into the league.
"Certainly in the case of Brett the NRL would need to be convinced that it was in both the player's best interests and the game's best interests that he move to another club and our current view is that Brett would not be accepted for registration for some time," Gallop said.
"There have been a number of players who have proven that they can benefit from another chance but clubs need to accept that they take on a huge responsibility in this area."
The Sharks took on such responsibility when they offered Seymour a lifeline when the Broncos cut him following allegations of an assault at a Brisbane hotel.
Fisk said he could still see a future for Seymour in the NRL.
"He's got challenges and we've tried to help with those and clearly we weren't hitting the right notes," he said.
"I think there's a great chance for him to revive his career ... we would not stand in his way for him to get an opportunity elsewhere."
Whether another club is willing to take that punt remains to be seen, particularly after the way Seymour made a mockery of his apology for the drunken episode which was caught on a camera phone in March this year.
Days after apologising to the fans at a Sharks home game, Seymour went on the Nine Network's The Footy Show where he admitted he was on his last chance.
"There's no more chances obviously, one more mistake and I'll be out," Seymour said at the time.
"I've had the full support from all the players, the club, they've been great to me and I want to repay their faith."