Super Netball has been embroiled in an ugly off-court incident, with West Coast Fever midcourter Verity Charles allegedly spat at and abused by fans of a rival club in Queensland.
It is alleged Charles was heading to dinner with teammates in the Brisbane hub when four members of the general public, some of whom were wearing Firebirds gear, abused Charles.
Charles played for the Firebirds in 2014 and 2015.
In a statement late on Sunday, Firebirds CEO Catherine Clark said the club was appalled at the behaviour, and she had apologised to Charles.
"This afternoon our club became aware of an incident involving ... Verity Charles. I have personally spoken to Verity to offer an unreserved apology, as well as the full support of our club," she said.
"The incident involved four women, one wearing a Firebirds supporter shirt. One person spat on the ground in front of Verity.
"Let me be absolutely clear - this behaviour will not be tolerated by our club. Those involved should be ashamed of themselves.
"The act of spitting towards anyone is despicable, notwithstanding the risks in the current COVID-19 environment. Behaviour of this nature has absolutely no place in our sport or society more broadly.
"We are in the process of identifying these women and what connection they have to our club.
"It is critical we support Verity and, at this moment, her focus is on winning a premiership. Out of respect for Verity's wishes, we have commenced an investigation into the incident out of the public domain. She wants to focus on her netball and our club will respect her request."
Super Netball is yet to release a statement on the incident.