FORMER Saints full back Ben Barba, who was sacked from North Queensland Cowboys yesterday, could be blocked from making a Super League return.

The 29-year-old, who won last year’s Man of Steel award, was axed by the Cowboys without playing a game over an alleged assault on his partner outside a Townsville casino.

The matter has now been brought to the attention of Queensland police, who are investigating the alleged incident.

NRL CEO Todd Greenberg has taken a strong line of zero tolerance, stating: “I haven’t seen the footage as yet, but if it shows violence towards a woman, really there is no debate. Ben Barba will be out of the NRL immediately and I can’t see him ever returning.

He said: “Domestic violence and violence against women doesn’t have a place in the game.

“I can’t be any clearer.”

It is understood that Greenberg is seeking to block Barba from returning to the Super League, which would leave European rugby union as his only option.