Herman Ese’ese’s first words after Hull FC prop cleared of verbal abuse

Aaron Bower
Herman Ese'ese Hull FC Alamy

Herman Ese'ese in action for Hull FC in 2024

Hull FC prop Herman Ese’ese will no longer face a Rugby Football League tribunal on Tuesday evening, after an allegation of verbal abuse made against the forward was ‘unequivocally withdrawn’.

Ese’ese was set to face a tribunal after fresh evidence led to him being charged by the Match Review Panel with a severe Grade F offence – that would have seen him facing a lengthy ban from the game and handing Hull a major blow.

However, the Black and Whites have confirmed that the charge against Ese’ese has now been dropped, meaning one of their most influential and in-form forwards will be free to play this weekend against Huddersfield Giants after new, ‘compelling evidence’ came to light which cleared Ese’ese.

Hull said in a statement: “The RFL is happy to correct the record and ensure that it is publicly acknowledged that Herman is not guilty of any offence.

“The new evidence includes an enhanced recording which has been prepared by a specialist sound engineer using the referee’s microphone. This evidence is compelling and contradicts the basis of the original allegations.

TRANSFER NEWS: Super League clubs to miss out on Cronulla Sharks man with new NRL deal likely

“The RFL has conveyed sympathy to the player and his club for the public nature of this process over the last two weeks – although it believes that all parties and the Match Review Panel have acted in good faith at all times. The RFL is grateful to Hull FC for recognising the need to investigate serious complaints.”

Ese’ese said in a brief statement issued via the club that he had “overwhelming relief and gratitude that the truth has come out” – and the club have insisted they and Ese’ese now wish to focus on rugby.

They said: “Hull FC has provided unwavering support to Herman throughout this process and is delighted with the RFL’s decision. The Club will work with Herman to ensure that he and the Club move forward from this exceptionally challenging period together. Herman has thanked all those who have stood by him and describes feeling “overwhelming relief and gratitude that the truth has come out”. Herman and the club now want to focus on rugby”.

In a season of huge difficulty for the Black and Whites, in which a number of their off-season signings have already left or been loaned out, Ese’ese has been a shining light with his performances – and he is now no longer facing the prospect of a ban.

READ NEXT: Could Hull finish bottom? 11 conclusions from the weekend’s rugby league