Quade Cooper fined $40k over 'toxic' comments
A MARATHON four-and-a-half hour meeting between Quade Cooper and Australian Rugby Union officials ended yesterday with the controversial Queensland Reds star fined $40,000 and given a three-match ban, suspended for two years.
The penalty came after Cooper made comments on Twitter, and repeated them on television, that a toxic environment existed within the Wallabies.
Cooper appeared contrite after the hearing, saying: "I understand that I fell well below par and what it means to be a Wallaby, and for all the supporters out there, my apologies".
He also said he would put his hand up for selection in the Wallabies squad.
Queensland Rugby said in a statement today that it fully supports the outcomes.
QRU CEO Jim Carmichael said he was satisfied with the process and appreciative of the manner in which Cooper's case was considered by an independent panel in Sydney and also that he endorses the heavy punishment the No. 10 was given.
"I have always maintained that irrespective of what has been perceived over Quade's inappropriate commentary over the last few weeks, he very much wants to play Rugby for his state and cherishes representing his country," Mr Carmichael said.
"For Quade to accept the penalty he was handed and to offer to make a public apology after an extremely difficult day, I'm hopeful is evidence of how much he understands the gravity of his actions and also shows his sincerity in wanting to move forward with his career with the Reds and the Wallabies, demonstrating how much he understands and respects his wider responsibility to our code.
"The hearing was also a good opportunity to share some commonality in our game with the ARU representatives and gain some insights.
"From my perspective I found the discussions both productive and helpful on many fronts.
"As a consequence, I'm now confident of a timely decision regarding Quade's ARU contract negotiations and look forward to having him back out on the field for the Reds in February."