Manu Tuilagi fined after jumping off ferry

Last updated 10:14 10/10/2011

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English rugby star Manu Tuilagi has been fined £3,000 (NZ$6075) in a disciplinary action after jumping from a ferry as it berthed at Auckland waterfront.

"I'm really sorry," Tuilagi said this morning.

"It was a silly thing to do and I apologise to everybody for any inconvenience caused."

The Samoan-born centre was detained by police after he leapt off the Fullers ferry Superflyte on its arrival from Waiheke Island, just before 7pm last night.

The England team, defeated 19-12 by France in their Rugby World Cup quarterfinal at Eden Park on Saturday, was on board the ferry.

Police said Tuilagi swam a short distance to Pier 3 at the downtown ferry terminal before being taken to the Auckland Central police station.

He was formally warned there about the offence of disorderly behaviour, and then released to the England team management.

Manager Martin Johnson said: "This was an irresponsible thing to do. Manu has been disciplined internally and I have warned him about his future conduct."

The fine would be paid to the Rugby World Cup Christchurch earthquake appeal.

A Fullers spokeswoman described the jump as "highly unusual and a very dangerous thing to do".

"Anyone making a decision to jump off a vessel that's coming in to berth while the engines are running in a very, very busy wharf is doing something very, very silly and dangerous," she said.

Controversy is not new for Tuilagi.

Earlier this month, he was fined $10,000 by the International Rugby Board for wearing an unapproved mouthguard carrying the name of a sponsor.

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