Tele: Payne Haas handed monster punishment for police bust-up

Payne Haas is on his final warning at the Broncos with Brisbane bosses ready to tear up his $3.4 million contract if he is embroiled in another off-field scandal.

Haas will be ordered to front a Broncos board meeting this week after the besieged Broncos prop was fined $50,000 by the NRL and hit with a three-game suspension following his bust-up with police last month.

The Broncos board have had enough of Haas’ antics and will place him under the strict conditions to which Tevita Pangai Jnr was subjected after his bikie barber shop COVID breach last year.

It is the second time the NRL has sanctioned Haas, who was fined $20,000 and slapped with a four-game suspension in 2019 for failing to fully comply with a probe by the governing body.

He has now been fined a total of $70,000 and missed seven games due to poor conduct in a sign NRL officialdom is losing patience with the NSW Origin prop.

The NRL has also ordered Haas to undergo an education program and perform community-service work after he was locked up on January 16 following an alcohol-fuelled altercation with Tweed Heads police.

The 21-year-old fronted the media on Monday afternoon, flanked by coach Kevin Walters, and said he accepted the punishment handed down by the NRL and will use his ban as a chance to “reflect on his behaviour”.

“I’ve gone to see the police officers involved and apologised for my conduct,” he said.

“I’ve also spent time with police watching the video of what I did that night.

“It has reinforced how poor my behaviour was and that really hit home for me.”

In the aftermath of the incident, Haas has also taken the drastic step of implementing a self-imposed booze ban.

“I’ve spoken to my family about that and I will be taking some time off alcohol,“ Haas said.

“I shouldn’t even be drinking it.

“I know it’s the wrong thing to do especially with my faith.

“I’ll learn from this mistake and work hard to be a better person in the future.”

Walters rejected the idea of imposing a club-wide booze ban because of the incident.

The head coach also hit back at criticism he had handled the Haas situation poorly, after walking out on a press conference last week when asked about his star forward’s behaviour.

“This is the appropriate time to talk about what’s happened with Payne,” Walters said.

“We were waiting for the NRL to come down with their sanctions.

“That’s happened today and I’m happy to speak to the press and everyone about my thoughts of the incident.

“We’re extremely disappointed with it and we certainly don’t condone anything that went on that night.

“I know he’s very regretful for it and now it’s about moving forward, paying the price and getting Payne back on track to make sure this incident doesn’t happen again to any of our players.”

Haas is rated Brisbane’s best front-row prospect in 20 years. Such is his talent, the hulking Haas made his State of Origin debut for the Blues in 2019 after just 10 first-grade games for the Broncos.

Haas will become a father in the coming months and accepts it is time he grew up ahead of the impending birth of his first child.

“This is a year where I want to focus on being the best person I can be, not just a football player,” he said.

“I can’t wait to be a dad and I certainly want to be the best role model I can be. I am also a bit nervous as being a parent as it comes with big responsibilities.

“I want to be a good partner to Leilani and a great dad to my newborn baby.

“I honestly believe what happened was out of character. I can’t wait to play alongside my Broncos teammates this season, but I need to win back the trust and respect of rugby league fans and sponsors of the club.

“I know it is a privilege to play in the NRL, so I need to start acting like it and appreciate it more.”

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