Dunedin streaker gets the silent treatment
CHARLES ANDERSON AND WILMA MCCORKINDALE
Adam Holtslag is having a day off, nursing a hangover and enduring the silent treatment from his girlfriend.
After the streaker became the victim of a king hit tackle at the All Blacks game in Dunedin on Saturday, footage of the incident went worldwide.
His nude body was dragged unceremoniously across the pitch in a headlock and he spent the night in police cells.
He has been charged with offensive behaviour which carries a maximum fine of $1000.
"It'll be the first and last time," Holtslag said.
"It wasn't on the bucket list or anything."
The 28-year-old builder said streaking was not planned but he and his five friends had watched the Grab-A-Seat Nude Blacks and England side match earlier in the day.
"The boys were just talking it up - the next thing you know."
Holtslag did not know how dramatic the hit was by Canterbury rugby player Brad Hemopo until he saw it the next day.
"I was expecting to get hit but I didn't really see that one coming."
Hemopo's High School Old Boy's club coach Joe Gee said not only was the tackle out of character for the player but he was rostered on to play for the team on the day.
"He is not an aggressive person . . . he is not the sort of person that does that but in the heat of the moment and being paid to do a job."
Gee said, being a student, Hemopo needed the extra money. He thought his starting number 8 Hemopo would be remorseful at the tackle.
Holtslag said his neck felt "surprisingly good" despite appearing to be violently snapped back in the tackle.
It was his ribs that hurt the most and said he almost passed out when Hemopo had him in a headlock.
However, he did not want to drag the incident out any further.
"I sort of knew it was coming but it was a bit of a cheap shot."
Holtslag said he was slapped with a five-year ban from the stadium and had to endure some rigorous questioning from his girlfriend on his return to Christchurch. "She wasn't too happy."
Holtslag said he would not be drinking for a while. He is due to appear in court on Wednesday.
His friends also owed him $500 for his troubles.
Dunedin Venues Management Limited (DVML) chief executive Terry Davies said Hemopo, who was employed by the company, acted appropriately in removing Holtslag from the pitch quickly.
"Any potential threat, especially when in close proximity to players must be dealt with.
"It is disappointing when an individual chooses to invade the pitch during a great game of rugby that was being enjoyed by a sell-out crowd."
When asked whether the streaker would receive an apology given the force of the tackle, Davies replied with an emphatic "no."
"He was in the wrong. I mean, we don’t condone his actions. In actual fact, we will come down hard on anyone who wants to put their position at risk and also the players on the field at risk."
Davies said conditions for entrance to the stadium are clear about anyone entering the field and putting ticketholders as well as players at risk.
New Zealand Rugby Chief Executive Steve Tew said he was disappointed that one fan chose to mar the night. "Our fans enjoyed a great live rugby experience in magnificent conditions at Forsyth Barr Stadium so it was a shame to see this happen."
- The Press
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