Parramatta coach Brad Arthur and shock jock Ray Hadley have quite a long-running feud, but the rivals appear to have had a temporary ceasefire on Tuesday during a chance meeting at a Sydney restaurant.
The grudge between the pair has reportedly been going on for many years, but boiled over when Arthur appeared to reference Hadley and journalist James Hooper during a fiery press conference following the Eels’ victory over Canberra two weeks ago.
It came after a report of a leaked internal investigation conducted by the Eels, which revealed claims of nepotism through the club and other deep-seated issues.
Since it was published just before the game – as Arthur coached against Hadley and Hooper’s mate Ricky Stuart – the Eels coach was furious.
Brad Arthur, pictured on Wednesday night’s Dally M Medal with wife Michelle, has reportedly offered a temporary ceasefire to longtime rival Ray Hadley
“Somebody has an agenda, but they’re not going to break this group. We’ve worked too hard. It was not necessary [as a group] even to talk about it,” an enraged Arthur said at the post-match press conference, as if referring to Hadley and Hooper.
It was only the last chapter in the book of the Hadley-Arthur feud.
Throughout the season, the shock jock constantly suggested that the Eels coach had a huge gap with Nathan Brown, who was making $500,000 per season per season, and said that was why the talented second-rower was not chosen.
That constantly annoyed the spiky Arthur.
Shock jock Ray Hadley has continued to attack Arthur on his radio shows
But in a chance meeting on Tuesday, there was reportedly no tense stalemate. Surprisingly, there was a handshake.
Arthur and Hadley were both at a Bella Vista restaurant called Jags, in Sydney’s northwest, to celebrate family birthdays, according to the Daily Telegram.
Arthur was there to celebrate son Jake’s birthday; which has sadly become the symbol of the club’s nepotism claims.
Hadley was there to celebrate his own birthday, and by all accounts the meeting was very cordial.
Jake Arthur recently celebrated his birthday – and it was the surprising catalyst for a temporary ceasefire in one of the rugby league’s ugliest feuds
‘bolts’ [Hadley] is not as talkative when involved in feuds. Apparently Brad walked up to him, knew it was his birthday and said ‘happy birthday, Ray,’” footy expert Buzz Rothfield told the Telegraph’s NRL podcast.
And Ray replied ‘good luck in the grand finale’ and they shook hands. Ray Hadley and Brad Arthur – the ugliest feud in rugby league, I think it’s resolved.’
Given the protracted nature of their clash, Hadley’s propensity to deliberately incite select people and Arthur’s determination to stand up for himself and the club, it could only be a temporary cool-down.