Anthony Milford will spend the rest of the 2022 season with the Newcastle Knights after the NRL confirmed on Saturday that it would register his contract.
The former Brisbane Broncos playmaker can start training with the Knights with immediate effect. However he will have to wait until at least round 11 of the competition before making his debut. Milford will need to take part in rehabilitation programs before being allowed to return to the pitch.
After leaving the Broncos at the end of last season, Milford agreed a deal with South Sydney. It was a lifeline for him after the Broncos opted against renewing his $1million deal.
It was also seen as a good deal for Souths. With Benji Marshall retiring they saw Milford as the perfect player to step in.
However the NRL refused to register the contract with the Bunnies following an incident in Brisbane last year.
Earlier this week Milford had three charges of assault dropped in court. The NRL then took a few days to “complete its review of the outcomes of the criminal proceedings”.
Then on Saturday they confirmed in a statement that Milford can join Newcastle.
“The NRL has zero tolerance for any form of violence involving women and will always take serious action in relation to such incidents,” the NRL said in a statement.
“Milford’s eligibility to play in the premiership will be conditional on him successfully completing a series of personal development and tailored rehabilitation programs.
“(As well as) ongoing assessments with NRL wellbeing and education, including regular updates to the Integrity Unit about his progress.
“He will not be permitted to play until the programs have been substantially completed, he has been assessed by an appropriate professional, and met with the NRL.”
Anthony Milford boost for Knights
The news will come as a boost to Newcastle, who are in need of a hand. They have lost a number of key players to injury and need a spark to get their campaign on track.
Not only that they are missing the influence of Mitchell Pearce following his move to Super League. So Milford’s arrival could be timely.
Adam O’Brien’s men currently sit 2-3 for the 2022 NRL campaign. They are back in action when they take on the Dragons on Easter Sunday.