Rugby stars are accused of snorting white powder off famous trophy
Rugby stars are accused of snorting white powder off famous trophy – as they’re left ‘gutted’ after smashing shield in half during wild grand final partying
- Rugby stars have been accused of snorting white powder off a famous trophy
- Hawke’s Bay players celebrated their grand final victory over the weekend
- They broke the famous Ranfurly Shield while a controversial photo emerged
Rugby stars in New Zealand have been accused of snorting white powder off a famous trophy that was broken during wild grand final celebrations.
NZ Rugby has taken the Ranfurly Shield from rugby side Hawke’s Bay following their victory over Wellington last weekend after the trophy was split in half in the midst of the team’s party.
An image of the broken shield with white powder and a rolled up bank note on it – suggesting drug use – also went viral on social media, with NZ Rugby set to investigate.
A player was also charged with driving with an excessive breath alcohol level after a car crash into a fence.
All Black Brad Weber and coach Brock James fronted the media on Wednesday and said they were ‘distraught’ and ‘gutted’ that the shield was broken, before addressing the white substance allegation.
A rugby team are in hot water after breaking a famous trophy while a photo of a white substance on the shield has emerged
Hawke’s Bay rugby team celebrated their grand final triumph over the weekend
‘We are hurting that this has happened,’ Weber, who wasn’t present when the shield was damaged but trusts his teammates’ version of events, said via Stuff.
It has been reported that the shield was damaged during a party at a player’s flat, attended by approximately a dozen people including teammates and non-squad members.
‘Neither of us [James or Weber] was there, so we can’t really comment as to who was there,’ Weber said.
‘We are as a playing group, mate, we are gutted. We are absolutely hurting that this has happened, that accidents happen, that is is broken.
‘Particularly for our community. We want to get it back out there and let them enjoy it.’
When asked about the white powder, neither player or coach would comment on the issue.
‘I wasn’t there, so I am not going to speculate on what that was,’ Weber said. ‘Obviously there is a NZ Rugby investigation about to get underway and we are going to be fully cooperative with all of that.
‘As a team are committed to that.’
In a statement, NZ Rugby general manager Steve Lancaster said: ‘New Zealand Rugby is aware of significant damage to the Ranfurly Shield and we are deeply disappointed.
‘We are also aware of images circulating on social media and, as a result, NZR has launched an investigation to understand what has occurred.
‘The shield has undergone a tremendous amount of restoration work over the past 12 months to ensure it remains a focal point and source of pride for the rugby community.
‘NZR will now take possession of the shield, begin the process of repair and reassess the protocols in place to look after it.
‘Our intention is that the Ranfurly Shield remains a part of the community, is enjoyed by the those who hold it and cared for as a taonga of our game.’
However, James Dwan, who has taken care of the Ranfurly Shield for the past eight years, has claimed that the white powder is most likely from plaster he added a few years ago to hold the centre piece together.
But the famous Ranfurly Shield was broken in the midst of the bedlam
‘I was having a bit of a think about that, and all of a sudden I thought “I know what that is”,’ he told NZ Herald.
‘On the inside, the centrepiece, the actual little oval badge in the middle of it, I actually put plaster in behind that to strengthen it a few years ago and I’ve got a funny feeling there’s still a bit of that powder.
‘That’s what it’ll be, if you had knocked it, the Shield, it would have loosened a bit of that powder.’
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