Ben Barba’s rugby league career is all but over as he faces a police investigation into alleged altercations with his long-time partner Ainslie Currie after a seven-hour drinking session on Australia Day.
Shocking details have emerged into the alleged incident inside of Townsville’s Ville Resort and Casino that was caught on CCTV, which was enough evidence to convince the Cowboys to sack Barba immediately.
The North Queensland recruit and one-time Dally M Medal winner is facing a life ban from the NRL, a move that would also be supported by the English Super League, effectively ending his rugby league career at the age of 29.
It all hinges on the damning CCTV vision which is alleged to show a violent altercation between Barba and Currie, the mother of his four young daughters.
The Sunday Telegraph is reporting police and the NRL Integrity Unit will investigate three separate incidents, including a heated verbal exchange in the swimming pool area of the hotel in front of several Cowboys players and their partners; an alleged physical clash inside the casino which was caught on CCTV; and another alleged physical incident in the carpark before the pair left together in a taxi.
The Telegraph is also reporting Cowboys players Justin O’Neill and Te Maire Martin were in the company of the couple but have told the club they did not witness the incident — rather, they helped them get a taxi home at around 8.30pm.
According to The Courier Mail, Barba is also alleged to have hurled rocks at Currie, who spoke to the club prior to his axing to ask for leniency in fear of the young family’s financial stability.
They are believed to still be in a relationship, and have been together for over a decade.
However, it all appears to have come undone for Barba, who will not be able to resume his career in the English Super League, where he was crowned Man of Steel for his time with St Helens in 2018.
“If you’re violent against a woman you can expect to be removed from the game. It starts now,” NRL CEO Todd Greenberg said on Saturday.
“I haven’t seen the footage as yet, but if it shows violence towards a woman then really there’s no debate. Ben Barba will be out of the NRL immediately and I can’t see him ever returning.”
Published 4th February 2019 on foxsports.com.au