The SP Hunters released a statement earlier in the week saying they had not been privy to Lo’s change of heart nor would they allow the Western Highlander a easy passage back into the team he twice walked out on.
Hunters chief executive officer Brad Tassell made it clear the club did not want Lo for the start their second season in the Queensland Cup despite the 22-year-old having a stellar 2014 and becoming the competition’s leading try-scorer with 23 touchdowns from as many games.
“The SP Hunters wish to clarify that Gary Lo was not invited back to PNG by the club’s coaching or management staff to resume a playing contract or to return to camp,” the statement said.
“The club has very strict policies, expected behaviour standards and a code of conduct in place for all players, with no exceptions.”
The Hunters management expect Lo to start back in the Digicel Cup in 2015 where his form and attitude will be monitored by the coaching staff before a decision would be made on whether he returns to the Hunters.
“This is a clear message to all SP PNG Hunters players and other PNG players to seek advice and guidance from the PNGRFL and/or SP PNG Hunters management to ensure any offers or approaches from overseas clubs are in the best interest of the player’s welfare. There will be no further comments or statements made on this matter.”
Lo played for the 2013 champions Port Moresby Vipers and could return to the club he helped win the Digicel Cup.
The Mt Hagen Eagels based in Lo’s home province are the other likely option, while Agmark Gurias would be the logical choice for him to join in order for the Hunters staff to keep tabs on his progress throughout the season.
Tkatchenko has not confirmed whether he will push for Lo’s inclusion into the Hunters.
It is understood the Moresby South MP is willing to support Lo’s entry into the Digicel Cup.