The fallen NRL star presented himself to Mackay police and was charged with two counts of public nuisance over an incident at the Townsville casino in January.The former Dally M Medallist will appear in Townsville Magistrates Court on March 22.Barba reportedly will not face domestic violence-related charges because his partner Ainslie Currie has not made a complaint.Barba was sacked by NRL club North Queensland without playing a game for the club last month over allegations he was violent towards Currie in the incident.The NRL gave Barba a lifetime ban after viewing CCTV footage of the incident.But Barba’s lawyer Campbell MacCallum claimed on Tuesday he would now attempt to have the ban overturned.”He’s expressed his desire to play football this year,” MacCallum told reporters.”He wants to explore his options in relation to challenging the NRL ban and hopefully play rugby league in some sort of capacity.”I don’t think he’d play NRL but certainly local football, and that’s going to help his focus.”He’s feeling the pressure of the media on him – he’s also feeling the pressure of not being able to play the game that he loves.”It’s certainly pretty distressing for himself and a trying time for his family.”Barba was charged a day after telling a television news crew he had “lost everything” and threatened to “hurt” the reporter.North Queensland coach Paul Green said Cowboys welfare officers would keep in touch with Barba.”Our welfare guys continue to stay in contact with Ben. The club will continue to support him however we can,” he said.Green was not as expansive when told Barba intended to fight the NRL ban.Asked if Barba should be allowed to play again, Green said: “It’s probably not for me to comment.”Besides the two charges, Barba was on Tuesday also banned by Queensland police from entering Townsville’s entertainment precinct for three months.After winning a premiership with Cronulla in 2016, the star fullback copped a 12 game NRL ban for testing positive to cocaine for a second time.He left for stints in French rugby union and the English Super League before being offered a lifeline by the Cowboys, only to be sacked on February 1 over the casino incident.
Speaking to Capital Sport in Cairo, Egypt where he is in ahead of Friday’s 2019 African Cup of Nations (AFCON) draw, the Belgian tactician who now works with Guinea said he felt he didn’t have enough support to continue in the job.“It was a very hard decision to leave Kenya,” the 63 year old Put says.“I didn’t feel like I had the support at that moment. There was pressure but no support. Opportunities came my way and as a coach you look to get more support. I worked for those three months with 100 percent motivation.”Former Harambee Stars head coach Paul Put ponders on the touchline during the 2017 CECAFA Senior Challenge Cup. PHOTO/Raymond Makhaya“I was very happy in Kenya because it was a nice county with nice people and I was lucky to win CECAFA on my first assignment. But I had to make a decision and it was not an easy one,” the tactician further stated.“The last four or five weeks were very hard for me and if you don’t have the conversation with the people responsible, it’s difficult for a coach. That’s why I decided to move because having support is important,” he added.Put assembled a new look team within few days of arriving in the country ahead of the 2017 Senior Challenge Cup hosted in Kenya and went all the way to clinch the crown, earning praise from foe and enemy.The team was hosted for breakfast by Deputy President William Ruto where they were heavily rewarded for the victory and support promised his way, but the tactician says that was never made possible.He pulled the shock move to resign in February after weeks of speculation and no sooner had he left his job at the Harambee Stars than the Syli Nationale of Guinea snapped him up for the second stint.And, he went on to help the Guineans qualify for the 2019 Cup of Nations having missed out on the 2017 edition, and this he did with one match day to go.Guinea finished top of Group H without losing a match winning three and drawing the remaining three.“Of course it is not the first time for me to be at AFCON but this was special because they did not make it to the last AFCON. The expectation was high this time and I am glad we delivered,” he stated.Former Harambee Stars head coach Paul Put during his interview with Capital Sport in Cairo, Egypt on April 10, 2019. PHOTO/Timothy Olobulu“I changed a lot in the team in terms of the organization structure, team players and sometimes you need luck and I was lucky to have the opportunity to qualify. Iit’s a nice feeling, very proud and hopefully we can play a very good AFCON,” he further added.On their targets for the tournament, Put says; “The first target is to get out of the first round and then from there we see what comes off it. You can go as far as you want if you can manage the first round. It is an exciting moment and sometimes it is important you have luck on your side.”He is eagerly anticipating for Friday’s draw which will be conducted outside the famous Egyptian pyramids in Giza.And what if he draws Kenya on Friday?“We will see, that would be interesting,” he says with a grin.“But we are ready for anyone. There is no small or big team in Africa. It will be tough especially now that there are 24 teams,” he stated.Put is also excited with the form that his star midfielder Naby Keita has picked for his English Premier League club Liverpool. Over the weekend, Keita scored his first Premier League goal for Liverpool and on Tuesday night scored his first Champions League goal for the Reds as they beat Porto 2-0 at Anfield.-Timothy Olobulu is reporting from Cairo, Egypt- 0Shares0000(Visited 6 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000Former Harambee Stars head coach Paul Put watches from the touchline during Kenya’s match against Rwanda in the CECAFA Senior Challenge Cup on December 3, 2017 in Kakamega. PHOTO/Timothy OlobuluCAIRO, Egypt, Apr 10 – Former Harambee Stars head coach Paul Put has opened up the lid on his exit from the national team exactly three months after he was appointed to the spot, despite leading the country to the CECAFA Senior Challenge Cup.Put was unveiled as Kenya’s coach at the Football Kenya Federation Annual General Meeting in Mombasa on November 18, 2018, but resigned from the post three months later on February 19.