Former NRL player Siosaia Vave disappears after pocketing sign-on fee with Group 10 club Blayney Bears
The search is on for former NRL player Siosaia Vave after he pocketed a $5000 sign-on fee from the Blayney Bears and then abruptly disappeared. It’s not the first time he’s pulled a vanishing act either.
He is the former 100-game NRL star who has left the state owing thousands of dollars to Sydney and country rugby league clubs and players.
Siosaia Vave, 30, pocketed a $5000 sign-on fee from the Blayney Bears for this season before abruptly disappearing. It has left the Group 10 club financially crippled.
A four-time Tongan international, Vave also personally borrowed $2400 from Blayney president Damon Taylor. The money having not been repaid.
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Siosaia Vave played for four clubs in the NRL.
Blayney hopes this story can lead to Vave making contact. He is believed to be interstate.
While attempting to track down Vave, Blayney discovered the 115kg front-rower borrowed $4000 from a teammate last year when with the St Mary’s Ron Massey Cup side.
Both clubs have tried desperately to track down Vave — without luck. Taylor has repeatedly called Vave’s mobile and left text messages but the player has not responded.
Vave has been given a total of $11,400, including his sign-on fee.
“He’s gone missing,” Taylor said.
“I’m gutted. The club thought it had kicked a deadset goal but that’s gone now. A month ago he stopped sending messages to us.
“The season is only two months away so we need him here training with us so the boys can get used to him but that’s not going to happen.”
Blayney has also asked former NRL players to help find Vave.
St Mary’s did not return calls with sources suggesting the club wants to give Vave another week to repay the money lent to him before going public.
The NSWRL – who govern country rugby league clubs – is aware of the Vave situation.
Vave played 108 NRL games for Cronulla, Manly, Melbourne and Parramatta. He had two stints with the Sharks and represented Melbourne in the club’s 2013 World Club Challenge win over Leeds.
The Blayney Chronicle hailed Vave’s recruitment in September as “the biggest the Bears have made since Kerry Hemsley in the 1990s.”Blayney Bears president Damon Taylor.
Vave attended the club’s presentation night late last year where he was given the $5000 sign-on fee.
Blayney’s financial outlay for Vave has left the club in a difficult financial situation. The Bears have not won a game for the past two seasons and hoped Vave’s recruitment would boost their chances of success in 2020.
“We gave him a $5000 sign-on bonus and I also transferred money out of my own account, another $2400,” Taylor said.
“We have been trying to contact him to come and start training but he hasn’t returned any of our calls.
“His ex-partner has supposedly got his phone and he is in the middle of Australia working. We have given him heaps of chances to get back in contract with us but he hasn’t.
“We’re a small club that hasn’t won a game for two years and we thought we had struck gold. We’re playing against towns with 30,000 to 40,000 people. We have 3000 people. We’re struggling for numbers as it is.”
St Mary’s has attempted to prevent Vave signing with any other club until the money owed to their player has been returned.
“I feel sorry for the bloke at St Mary’s,” Taylor said.
“I have spoken to him and he’s devastated. The bloke lent (Vave) $4000 thinking he would get it back next payday but he hasn’t seen a cent.”
Blayney hope the country rugby league community will rally behind the club and help financially to cover their loss.