Panthers star Brent Naden is reportedly considering making a formal complaint to police over the alleged racial abuse he copped from fans at Central Coast Stadium.
The Sun-Herald reported the abuse of Naden included a reference to his famous cousin and former fugitive Malcolm Naden.
The 24-year-old made several complaints throughout the first half of the Panthers 18-12 victory over the Warriors.
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A new video has emerged seemingly involving the spectators that were ejected from the ground after allegedly racially abusing Panthers winger Brent Naden.
The video, which was posted to Instagram, shows the group of men leaving the stadium on Friday night, yelling “F*** the Panthers” while performing an Indigenous dance for the camera.
Former Kiwi Test hooker Issac Luke was outraged by the video and took to Twitter to condemn the group.
“This was an awesome game to watch. Proud of the @NZWarriors brothers,” he wrote.
“I don’t know what was said to the bro Naden but these clowns walked out of the grounds like this.
“This video takes so much away from our game. Learn to respect others cultures.”
Acting NRL CEO Andrew Abdo has vowed to come down hard on the group of spectators, saying the incident that took place during Penrith’s win over the Warriors on Friday night “should never happen” and the governing body plans on taking the “strongest possible action the game can take.”
“If the allegations are proven to be of a racial nature or vilification nature or of a bullying nature, we’ll take the strongest possible action the game can take against those individuals,” he said.
“Things like this don’t happen that often but they should never happen. When they do happen, we have to act decisively. We have to act in a unified and strong way – and that’s what we intend to do.
“It’s important for us to know that all our players feel supported, that everyone in the game – whether they’re fans or players – feel supported, and that we uphold the standards that are important to us as a rugby league community.
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Naden, a proud Indigenous Australian, reported the comments to a club trainer and not long after eight spectators were thrown out of Central Coast Stadium.
The NRL is investigating the incident and Abdo confirmed bans for those involved will be considered.
The NRL went down a similar road in 2018 when two spectators were banned indefinitely for racially abusing former Rabbitohs star Greg Inglis.
“We’ll complete the investigation and we’ll take whatever action we deem necessary to make sure that those fans who are proven to act in this way are not able to attend our games going forward,” Abdo said.
“There was a large group of people involved, so we will need to look at all the available evidence and then we’ll base the determination on what was said and what can be proven.
“But we’ve proven in the past – and we’ve acted similarly in the past – that we will take strong action and that may include excluding fans for a long period of time.”
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Dr Dvir Abramovich, Chairman of the Anti-Defamation Commission, contacted foxsports.com.au to throw his support behind the 24-year-old and called on all sportspeople to use their status in society to “call out and challenge such vilification”.
“This is another sad reminder that bigotry is alive and well in Australia, and is a stain on our community,” he said.
“We stand in solidarity with Brent Naden during this difficult time. Such hatred is beyond the pale, and violates the core Australian values of respect, equality and inclusivity, and compels each and every one us to condemn this ugly expression of intolerance. This is not who we are as a nation.
“We call on all sportspeople, on and off the field, to call out and challenge such vilification, and to use their fame and following to inspire young people by their anti- racism message.
They can reach hearts in a way that very few can.
“Now is the time to speak out and declare that such outrage will never find a home in our nation.”
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Friday’s incident outraged the rugby league community.
Greg Alexander and Braith Anasta called for life bans, while Naden’s Panthers teammates took to social media to show their support for him.
“He obviously has the support of his team but more importantly he has the support of the entire rugby league community,” Abdo said.
“I think the response following this incident shows just how we feel about matters like this and I think he appreciates that.
“But he’s a human being and I’m sure he feels rattled. He knows that there are different ways in which we can support him through this and our investigative team has been working with him.”