A stroke of luck again for Cronulla Sharks Fullback, Ben Barba, as he had signed a deal five days ago, allowing him to return to the field on match of this season.
Barba was suspended last year, two days after the Sharks gained their historic premiership, when he tested positive of Cocaine.
As it was the second consecutive year that he tested positive, NRL facilitated his suspension immediately, which saw the star fullback off to Thailand for rehabilitation.
And in the last two months, the club went out of their way to make sure they get him back for at least some part of the 2017 season, as per the successful cut down of 12 months suspension to 12 rounds suspension.
His suspension carries through to training sessions as well, with the fullback’s non participation in team trainings, despite insistence from the club.
NRL is firm on its decision that the earliest possible return for Barba is round 13.
Adding to the 12-match ban is an annual salary cut of five per cent that will carry right through the season.
Meanwhile his contract will be submitted to the NRL for approval, and registration, according to a statement released by the club.
And in the instance that it gets approved, the club and the NRL Integrity Unit will come up with a time period, for the fullback’s mixing with the team as well as training.