BARNETT TO PLAY IN SEMI-FINALS AFTER NRL REACHES STALEMATE IN RACIAL SLUR DISPUTE

After completing its investigation into allegations of racial abuse in Friday night’s game between the Gold Coast Titans and Newcastle Knights, the NRL say it hasn’t been able to get to the bottom of the matter.

The NRL Integrity Unit interviewed the Knight’s Mitch Barnett, the Titan’s Tyrone Peachey, players from both teams in the vicinity of the alleged racial slur and match and club officials.

The footy’s regulatory body also reviewed footage and audio from the broadcast and internal comms records.

However, NRL investigators say the facts remain contested by each player and they weren’t able to determine the matter.

Both Barnett and Peachey will now be referred to a conciliation process.

It means Barnett will play in the semi-finals against the Rabbitohs on Sunday afternoon.

NRL Chief Executive Andrew Abdo said the game would closely monitor the outcome of conciliation.

“Rugby league is an inclusive game and we take our duty of care to all of our players very seriously. It is important that every player feels supported when they make a complaint, and we want to see our players take a leadership role in speaking out,” he said.

“It is also important that where there is a dispute as to what has been said, the Game has a process designed to bring the parties together to address those matters in an appropriate way. My priority right now is monitoring the welfare of both players. I’m hopeful a conciliation meeting will find a resolution that benefits both players.”