Banned NRL star Michael Jennings agrees to walk away from Eels

Banned Eels star Michael Jennings has agreed to walk away from his reported $400,000 contract after coming to a mutual agreement with Parramatta.

The former NSW State of Origin star is still awaiting the completion of his doping case after he was provisionally suspended by the NRL in October, having tested positive to Ibutamoren and Ligandrol.

The Eels released a statement on Tuesday revealing Jennings has cut ties with the club with 18 months still remaining on his contract

The statement does not make it clear if a settlement has been reached.

The club says in the statement Jennings agreed to cut his contract in a selfless act to allow the club to sign another player to their roster for the 2021 season.

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Parramatta’s Michael Jennings tackled by Melbourne’s Brenko Lee during the NRL match between the Parramatta Eels and Melbourne Storm at Bankwest Stadium. Picture. Phil HillyardSource:News Corp Australia

“Parramatta and Mr Jennings have agreed to part ways because Mr Jennings wishes to allow the team to fill his position and have the best 2021 and 2022 seasons possible,” the club statement claimed.

“Mr Jennings is the subject of an ongoing process with Sports Integrity Australia (SIA).

“Mr Jennings has been with the Eels since 2016 and based on its experience with Mr Jennings over the last 5 years, Parramatta does not consider that Mr Jennings would intentionally take performance-enhancing substances.”

The Eels were reported to have ceased making payments to Jennings in February.

The Daily Telegraph’s Phil Rothfield reported the Eels suspended Jennings’ $8000-a-week salary.

The 33-year-old is reportedly on a $400,000 contract, which expired at the end of the 2022 season.

He said at the time his positive test was announced that he was “completely shattered”.

He is facing a potential four-year ban as he continues to wait the outcome of Sports Integrity Australia’s process.

Jennings returned a positive test for banned substances on September 29 and the Eels were notified about the result in October, during the 2021 NRL finals series.

Jennings has played 105 NRL games for the Eels since 2016, scoring 42 tries for the club.

He previously represented the Penrith Panthers and Sydney Roosters, winning an NRL premiership in 2013.

Jennings was also a New South Wales mainstay in the State of Origin, representing the Blues on 18 occasions.

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