Former NRL player Blake Ferguson has created his own style of haiku in the process of losing his contract with a Japanese rugby union club for alleged drug possession and assault.
Ferguson has also earned a nomination for The Frownlow Medal Hall of Fame just a few months after leaving the NRL.
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 NRL star Jarryd Hayne is the most recent recipient.
The Frownlow Medal Hall of Fame honours former players and players who received media attention in previous seasons, for similarly scandalous behaviour, and its inductees include Ben Cousins and Julian O’Neill.
NEC Green Rockets Tokatsu issued a 10-word statement to sack Ferguson before he had even played a game for his new club, following allegations that the star winger was caught in possession of cocaine and was arrested for punching a patron at a restaurant in the red light district of Tokyo.
“Regarding Ferguson, the player contract was cancelled on January 2nd,” the club confirmed in a statement on January 3. The statement does not conform to the traditional structure of a haiku, but is only slightly different.
Possession of illicit drugs attracts heavy punishment in Japan, and the former NSW and Australia representative could find himself behind bars for a long time.
It is believed Ferguson is penning his own haiku in response to the allegations. It will need to be good, as he may have destroyed his chances of playing either rugby code at any level in the future. Then again, Izaia Parese was sacked by the Brisbane Broncos for drug possession and he’s now playing for the Wallabies.
Aussie fans of ‘Fergo’ can rest easy knowing that their tax dollars are funding consular assistance from the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
The premiership winner with the Sydney Roosters took only a few months to earn his first nomination for The Frownlow Medal Hall of Fame, after numerous nominations for The Frownlow Medal during his NRL career. He was found guilty of indecent assault on a woman in 2013, and has admitted to a gambling addiction. He and his partner in crime, Josh Dugan, also distributed controversial photos of themselves drinking alcohol on social media while playing for the Canberra Raiders.
Footy fans now await the publication of Ferguson’s haiku and look forward to another year of off-field scandals and nominations for The Frownlow Medal Hall of Fame.