Souths axe Adam MacDougall, Mick Moran - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Souths axe Adam MacDougall, Mick Moran

By Philip Henderson 25/07/2006 07:14:11 PM Comments (0)

South Sydney has axed star centre Adam MacDougall and wayward halfback Mick Moran on a ruthless day of blood letting at the Bunnies.

The NRL club ended its association with outspoken back MacDougall two months early and terminated Moran's contract with more than a year to run for disciplinary reasons.

Executive chairman Peter Holmes a Court took full responsibility for the axings, saying the decision to pay out the end of MacDougall's contract came with the support of the Rabbitohs' management, coaching staff and senior players.

"It's the best thing for the team for next year," said Holmes a Court.

"The responsible thing to do is to shake hands and part ways, and I won't be making any other comments on the relationship with Adam other than to wish him the best of luck in his next endeavours.

"It was an internal decision made at all four levels, but the buck stops with me. I'm responsible."

With Holmes a Court in a board meeting, club chief executive Shane Richardson met face to face with MacDougall Tuesday morning to deliver the former Test centre his last rites as a Rabbitoh.

The 31-year-old has already signed a two-year deal with Newcastle from 2007.

Last week he was offered a release from Souths to play out the year with Hull in the English Super League, but turned down the short-term deal.

"It would have helped the club enormously if he had done that, but he chose not to do it," Holmes a Court said.

"At the end of the day it's not a great tiff between Adam and us, and we've decided to go our separate ways.

"The feedback (from the morning meeting with Richardson) was it was an amicable parting.

"He made a commitment, in his words, that he was not going to bag the club, he was going to move on, and we've made a commitment, as we would at all times anyway, just to speak civilly about the disillusion."

MacDougall lived up to his end of the bargain, issuing a statement to say: "Obviously this is a disappointing conclusion to my tenure with the club.

"I have tried to pass on my experience to assist the club during my time here. I have received tremendous support from my teammates who have wished me all the best in returning to the Knights."

The decision ends a three-year association between "Mad Dog" MacDougall and the Rabbitohs which had turned particularly sour in recent times.

MacDougall was fined $10,000 and suspended for one game in May after criticising teammates following the club's 44-4 loss to the Wests Tigers.

After agreeing to return to Newcastle on Friday he said: "Souths was probably enough to warn me off playing for money."

His early departure effectively ends the MacDougall era at Souths, with brother Luke joining St George Illawarra next year and doubtful to return in 2006 because of a fractured thumb.

Moran, 22, made a promising start to his NRL career last year, but has struggled to force his way back into first grade in 2006 despite the club winning just one from 19 games.

Holmes a Court would not elaborate on the reasons behind his sacking.

"His contract has been terminated for disciplinary reasons ... we won't comment on it, but suffice to stay the player is leaving us," he said.

Meanwhile, the Rabbitohs re-signed 21-year-old backrower Manase Manuokafoa for three years and Kane Cleal for next year, while extending centre Germaine Paulson's tenure until 2007.

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