Taupau apologises to Maloney
Remorseful Wests Tigers lock Martin Taupau apologised to Roosters five-eighth James Maloney after an incident in last Friday night's game saw the Kiwi international sin-binned and facing a possible month-long suspension.
Taupau was sin-binned late in the Tigers 33-8 loss to the Roosters for a swinging arm on Maloney after the Roosters five-eighth had jumped on a loose ball on the ground.
The Match Review Committee charged Taupau with a Grade Three Dangerous Contact (Head/Neck) on Monday and he is looking at three weeks on the sideline with the early guilty plea.
If he were to fight the charge at the NRL judiciary and lose, Taupau would miss the next month of football in a crucial period where the Tigers are trying to avoid their maiden wooden spoon.
"It's football. I was trying to create something for the boys in a good way. I guess it didn't pan out," Taupau said.
"I haven't looked back at the footage but I went in and saw the Roosters boys afterwards and just apologised to James Maloney.
"I told him I didn't intend for there to be malice in it, so we shook hands and left it at that."
Taupau, who talked to NRL.com last week about the Tigers' pilot Personal Branding program he was undertaking in hope of changing how people see him on the field to improve his brand off it, has certainly taken a blow in the aftermath of the incident.
Avoiding questions about his standing in the game – labelling it a "hard" question to fathom – Taupau was otherwise devastated and hopes his team can improve in the first half of their final six games of the season without him.
"It has been a rollercoaster ride for us," he said.
"We're trying to stick together and stay strong for one another and hopefully results will come and back that.
"We just want to improve week-in, week-out. The results don't look pretty but for us it's a slow progress."