‘Wake up to yourselves’: Ray Hadley calls out NRL sponsor’s low act against Ryan James
The major sponsor of the Gold Coast Titans is under fire after blaming captain Ryan James for the termination of their contract.
The Titans star was asked to deliver the ‘Welcome to Country’ at the NRL Grand Final but came unstuck in front of more than 82,000 fans at ANZ Stadium.
The proud indigenous man stopped halfway through saying, “I’m lost” after forgetting some of the words.
James was widely commended for his honesty and how he handled the situation… until now.
National construction and event hire giant TFH has torn up its six-figure contract with the Titans, saying James’ “embarrassing” and “offensive” performance was a major part of the decision.
In a letter to the Titans, TFH director Brett Thomas cites the “utilisation and selection of player talent” as well as the club’s on-field performance.
“The embarrassing performance of Ryan James in his speech last weekend was offensive and weighed heavily on this decision,” Thomas wrote.
Ray Hadley has come out swinging in defence of the 28-year-old Titans captain, calling for TFH to “tell the truth”.
“The poor bugger got stage fright… What was offensive about it?” says Ray.
“And the poor bloke is now having to put up with this mob, TFH, saying he was a major reason for the termination.
“Tell the truth. You don’t want to be associated with them because they can’t win a game. Just tell the truth!
“Why would you throw Ryan James under the bus? You ought to wake up to yourselves TFH.”
Click PLAY below to hear Ray’s comments in full
Former NRL player Jamie Soward tells Luke Grant it’s a ridiculous reason to pull sponsorship.
“To blame Ryan James, who got up and made an honest mistake… we all felt sorry for him.
“Sometimes we need to realise that athletes are humans as well, they’re going to make mistakes and for Ryan to be made a scapegoat… I just think it’s poor form from TFH.”
Click PLAY below to hear the full interview
Image: Channel 9