27 Apr 2010

Club owner labels Waldron chief rat in salary cap scandal

6:23 pm on 27 April 2010

The chief executive of News Ltd, which owns the embattled National Rugby League franchise the Melbourne Storm, has labelled the club's former CEO, Brian Waldron, the chief rat in the salary cap scandal.

News Ltd CEO John Hartigan, on Tuesday afternoon spoke to the players and staff at the club for the first time since the scandal broke.

Waldron, who quit the Storm several months ago to join new Super Rugby franchise the Melbourne Rebels before being forced to resign, also broke his silence on the salary cap on Tuesday.

Waldron claims he told NRL boss David Gallop several years ago that there needed to be an amnesty period to allow the many clubs he believed were abusing the salary cap to come forward without fear of punishment.

But Hartigan says he stands by his claim that Waldron was the chief instigator but expects an inquiry to show just who knew what.

Hartigan says he understands why the players might want to contest some of the sanctions, which included the stripping of its 2007 and 2009 NRL titles and that they won't gain any competition points this seasons, but News Ltd won't be back any such appeals.