Fans of the NRL will have the chance to meet Jai Arrow‘s mystery guest when he attends the award’s night for The Frownlow Medal later this year. And he won’t have to sneak her in.
Arrow was kicked out of the Queensland State of Origin camp for brining an unknown person into the team bubble and breaching strict COVID-19 bio-security protocols. He was also fined $35,000 and will miss two games for the South Sydney Rabbitohs.
The Frownlow Medal is awarded to the player whose off-field demeanour epitomises the values of the modern-day footballer and draws attention to the status of footballers as role models to young Australians. It covers Australia’s four major football codes; the National Rugby League (NRL), Australian Football League (AFL), the A-League (Football) and Rugby Union’s Super Rugby competition. NRL player Shaun Kenny-Dowall won the inaugural medal in 2015, while AFL player Elijah Taylor is the most recent recipient.
The talented back rower knew he was breaking team rules, and knew the consequences. Just days earlier, most of the St George-Illawarra team had been fined and suspended for attending a house party, and Paul Vaughan had been sacked. Despite this, Arrow organised the rendezvous. He now leaves a hole in a Queensland team which is already missing David Fifita, as they try to prevent NSW from taking a clean sweep.
Arrow can console himself with his Frownlow nomination, and with the knowledge that he won’t have to smuggle his plus 1 into the Frownlow awards night, because anything goes. The only question is where the party will be held. So far, the leading candidates are Northies and Paul Vaughan’s house.