Cronulla interim coach Josh Hannay has vented his frustration with former representative star Josh Dugan over the COVID-19 biosecurity breach that has left him unavailable for selection and facing a $25,000 fine.
Dugan has been forced to undergo 14 days isolation after attending a restaurant in Potts Point last weekend when NRL players were under strict instructions to remain at home unless training, playing or conducting essential household requirements.
Sharks welfare manager Amanda King has been in daily contact with Dugan this week but Hannay revealed leading into Sunday’s match against Brisbane that he had not heard from the veteran centre or attempted to speak with him.
"Josh is in isolation and we haven’t had any contact with Josh since the incident," Hannay said.
"What I will say is that as a club we are extremely disappointed with those actions.
"I think every single player, staff member and employee of the NRL right now has to understand the bigger picture and the importance of their actions and doing the right thing and how delicate the situation is at the moment.
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"We need everyone doing the right thing at the moment, we need all hands on deck and we are extremely disappointed by Josh’s actions."
The NRL has issued a $25,000 breach notice to Dugan, who was dropped to the NSW Cup three weeks ago to play for feeder club Newtown.
The 31-year-old former international had already been advised by the Sharks that he was not part of incoming coach Craig Fitzgibbon’s plans for next season and would not be offered a new contract.
Asked if he thought Dugan should apologise to the Cronulla coaching staff and players, Hannay said there would be a discussion when he returned to training.
"I haven’t personally heard from Josh and I am not sure if he has been in contact with the playing group but at some point obviously in the next couple of weeks he will come back into the bubble and we will have a face to face then," Hannay said.
"At the moment, I haven’t had any conversations with Josh."
Meanwhile, Hannay confirmed he was set to remain with the Sharks next season as an assistant to Fitzgibbon, whose appointment in April resulted in the sacking of head coach John Morris.
Hannay said Fitzgibbon wanted him to stay and he was in the process of finalising a deal with Cronulla.
"We probably talk every couple of weeks and when we talk it is invariably just about football," he said.
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"It is just about the game and our thoughts on the game and the trends in the game. We don’t really talk a lot about next year.
"For me personally I am hoping to have my situation sorted pretty soon. The club has made me an offer to stay on and I want to stay.
"We just haven’t got around to finalising it at this stage but in my discussions with Craig he knows I want to stay and he wants me here so that will get sorted in the near future."
The Sharks haven’t given up hope that Melbourne coach Craig Bellamy will join the club in a coaching director’s role as he has not yet turned down their approach as he decides whether to continue coaching the Storm beyond this season.