Gold Coast Titans Head of Performance and Culture Mal Meninga has slammed the decision by one of the club’s major sponsors to walk away over Ryan James’ Grand Final stumble.
Construction and event hire company TFH has informed the club it is cutting ties a year early, claiming James’ gaffe weighed heavily on its decision.
James was given the honour of giving the Welcome to Country at this month’s Grand Final, but forgot some of his lines towards the end of his speech.
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TFH labelled James’ bungle as “embarrassing” and offensive”.
The company also blamed the club’s poor performance this season which saw the Titans end up with the wooden spoon.
TFH have been a sponsor of the Titans since 2012 and have stuck solid through other controversies.
Meninga has hit out TFH over their decision to walk away and for citing James’ speech as one of the reasons.
“I think it’s a pretty weak excuse,” Meninga told AAP.
“They have been great sponsors of the Titans for a long period of time. I know there are some other things in that letter sent to them (the club).
“But for that to be part of it, it’s in pretty poor taste.”
“Ryan was a little embarrassed by it all, but hey we forget things,” Meninga said.
“As I say to everyone, you put that on a scale of the negative things that happen in your life. It doesn’t even get a run to start off with.”
TFH remains a sponsor of both Manly and Cronulla.