The Newcastle Knights have sacked luckless utility back Dylan Phythian for a second breach of the NRL drugs policy.
Phythian is understood to have tested positive twice to social drugs.
The Knights had the option of accepting a 12-week suspension and standing by Phythian, but instead chose to terminate the final year of his contract.
It is understood Knights CEO Phil Gardner and the Wests Group's board of directors wanted to send a firm message, given the Knights' long and dubious history with regards to drugs issues.
READ MORE: Newcastle Knights news hub
The Belmont product has played in three NRL games.
He scored a try on debut against South Sydney in 2016 but suffered a season-ending knee injury in round one last year.
It was the second time he had ruptured his anterior-cruciate ligament.
The Knights released a statement on Tuesday:
“The Newcastle Knights have today announced the release of Dylan Phythian from the Club.
“Phythian has had a second contravention under the NRL’s Illicit Drugs Policy, which automatically incurs a 12-match suspension.
“After conferring with Dylan, the club has made the decision to terminate his playing contract. His behaviour is at odds with the culture we are building within the club.
“The Knights will provide him with counselling support during this challenging time.”