Origin star Ferguson banned by NRL

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Canberra winger Blake Ferguson has been suspended for the second State of Origin clash on Wednesday week after being charged with indecent assault.

The 23-year-old has been banned indefinitely by the National Rugby League over “repeated behavioural issues involving the abuse of alcohol”, culminating in Sunday’s nightclub incident.

The NRL will reserve its decision on when Ferguson, who made his Origin debut in New South Wales’ victory over Queensland in game one, may be able to resume playing until it is in a position to assess any further relevant facts with Canberra and their own integrity unit.

“The fans do not want to see the game tarnished and neither do the players,” said NRL chief executive Dave Smith.

“It’s time for people to understand that the game isn’t going to accept this sort of behaviour.

“The first step in Blake’s case is to make a clear call in relation to Origin and tomorrow we will consult with the Raiders to determine the minimum period we would look at in terms of suspension.”