Crusaders cleared over eye-gouge claim
April 9, 2012
Tood Blackadder maintained his player's innocence throughout © Getty Images
The Crusaders have had allegations of eye gouging thrown out by a citing commissioner after the claims could not be substantiated.
Bulls forwards Chiliboy Ralepelle and Flip van der Merwe levelled the charges against the Kiwi franchise after their Super Rugby clash in Pretoria on Saturday, but SANZAR chief executive Greg Peters said the commissioner had reviewed the match and found there was no case to answer.
Crusaders coach Todd Blackadder believes an apology is now in order from the Bulls, saying: "The citing commissioner has reviewed it and after that review there was nothing in the video footage that would point to the allegation being substantiated. The citing commissioner also found it interesting that the Bulls did not follow through with a complaint within the four-hour window after the game."
Blackadder said that, upon review, it was clear that his players had no case to answer.
"The first one with Chiliboy, you would expect that the player would come out of the breakdown holding his eye, but he certainly didn't. I wonder whether it was a negative ploy," he said.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
"The loudest cheer at a rugby game, away from social media gimmicks, pumping music and pyrotechnics will always be for a try." Tom Hamilton on the Twickenham atmosphere
"The only thing that will stop this England team from becoming a great team is themselves. They need to ask themselves 'what can we be?'" The Phil Vickery column
The latest Monday Maul looks at the hectic final weekend, the Lions hangover, the superb Mike Brown and the 'selfie'
"At the crux of this England team is a lack of fear, they are not afraid to throw playbooks out of the window." Tom Hamilton reports from Twickenham