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New Zealand Rugby League Inc v Sonny Cavanagh and Joe Vaifale

ST 11/07 ST 12/07 · Decision 8 September 2007 · New Zealand Rugby League Inc v Sonny Cavanagh (ST 11/07) and New Zealand Rugby League Inc v Joe Vaifale (ST 12/07). The Tribunal heard both of these cases together, by consent of the parties, under urgency. The Tribunal issued its decision shortly after the hearing. Reasons for the decision were released on 17 September 2007


Anti-doping – cannabis – recreational use and use for pain relief – players stated unaware cannabis was on prohibited list – athletes are responsible for complying with anti-doping rules – provisionally suspended by NSO and had missed an important semi-final – players’ team in final and cases heard under urgency – aggravating circumstances of players signing a participation agreement stating that aware of NSO’s anti-doping policy – discussion of Tribunal’s approach to sanctions for cannabis violations as set out in the Minute of Tribunal of 15 December 2006 and discussion of some previous cases – six weeks’ ineligibility imposed on each player.

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