Prime Minister Scott Morrison will pay Josh Dugan‘s fine after the Sharks veteran was caught breaching COVID protocols.
Dugan earned yet another nomination for The Frownlow Medal when he was caught dining in a restaurant in Sydney recently, in contravention of the NRL COVID-19 bio-security protocols. The ageing centre was fined $25,000 and the prime minister has promised to reach into his own pocket to cover the fine.
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.
Dugan was initially shocked at such a generous offer from the leader of the nation, despite the fact that Morrison is the club’s number one ticket holder.
“Yeah, nah mate, I couldn’t believe it,” Dugan explained.
“But then Scotty told me why. He said he loves the Sharks. Well, he loves them now, he grew up in the Eastern Suburbs so he’s probably a Roosters fan, but anyway. He goes to all our games and stuff, but said he paid my fine for a different reason.”
“He said he kind of feels like it’s his fault that I got fined. See, he handles all that COVID vaccination stuff, because he’s the PM, and it’s been a real shambles. He said that if more people in Australia had been vaccinated by now, pretty much everyone could go to restaurants whenever they want. We wouldn’t all be in lockdown and you wouldn’t get fined just for going out for dinner with a mate.”
“So, I said, yeah, that makes sense – thanks for the money Scotty.”
Dugan will also have to stay away from the Cronulla team for a fortnight, and Morrison is expected to join him in his period of isolation.
“We’ll sit on the roof in bean bags and drink Bacardi Breezers, cos that’s the kind of classy guy that Scotty is.”