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He has an obligation to stay on, says Piggins


Glenn Jackson

"I think he's got some obligation to stay" ... George Piggins.

"I think he's got some obligation to stay" ... George Piggins. Photo: Simon Alekna

AFTER fighting a bitter and public battle for the control of South Sydney with Russell Crowe, George Piggins now wants the Hollywood star to reconsider his decision to sell his stake in the club.

Piggins told Fairfax Media on Sunday that he feared this day would come - Crowe announcing that he would be standing aside, having wrested control from the former club president, along with Peter Holmes a Court, in 2006.

Fearful of what may occur now that the actor plans to relinquish his ownership at the end of next year, Piggins said: ''I'd like Russell to reconsider it. To take the club to where he has, to be honest, I think he's got some obligation to stay. If there is a move back to the old days, we might lose the club forever.''

But Piggins, who has refused to attend a South Sydney match since his reign was unceremoniously ended, said he was not shocked when he was informed on Sunday morning that Crowe would sell his share.

''I thought it was only a matter of time before it happened,'' he said. ''This was my concern in the first place. But I don't know his reasons - whether he just got sick of it or it was costing him too much money. I don't know his finances. I also know there's a lot of time involved in running a football club. But look, this was always my concern. It was his business, so it was his business to do what he wants to.''

Piggins said he now feared that, with Crowe relinquishing his ownership, the Rabbitohs could be eventually moved - or worse.

''It could be [moved],'' Piggins said. ''It's a big concern. I'd like to see someone with money continue it on, but I don't know where it's going to go now. I always remember what Kerry Packer used to say. He always said you need to be mad to own football teams and racehorses. I agree with him. The club's had a bit of experience with Russell, so hopefully that continues. Even though I didn't agree with the way he took over, the reality is, they might need him to stay aboard.''

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