Matthew Wright's maiden season with the Cowboys has come to an abrupt end after he accepted a reduced ASADA suspension stemming from the 2011 supplements program at Cronulla. Credit: NRL Photos Copyright: NRL Photos
North Queensland Cowboys outside back Matthew Wright has accepted an offer from ASADA following their investigations into the Cronulla club’s 2011 season.
The decision means Wright will be suspended immediately until November 23, 2014.
"In accepting the offer today, it was agreed that Matthew did not knowingly or deliberately take any substance that was in contradiction with the WADA code," Cowboys CEO Peter Jourdain said.
"He was advised through that period in 2011 that he wasn't taking any substance that was illegal.
"It's very disappointing for Matthew, and the Cowboys, that he will now miss out on the possibility of playing in a finals series in his first year in North Queensland and the chance to play for Samoa in the Four Nations later this season.
"Matthew has been outstanding for us this season and we will welcome him back to pre-season training once his suspension has been served.
"In the meantime, the Cowboys will continue to offer every support possible for Matthew as he comes to terms with what has happened this week."
Wright played 62 games for the Sharks between 2009 and 2013 before joining the Cowboys earlier this year where has since scored nine tries in 17 games including a hat-trick against the Wests Tigers in Round 22.
As Wright will not be available to play for the Cowboys against South Sydney on Saturday night, a replacement will be required in the backline with a decision not expected to be made until game day.