Michael Cheika in alleged sideline altercation

GEORGINA ROBINSON
Last updated 12:45 02/04/2014
Michael Cheika
Getty Images
IN HOT WATER: Waratahs coach Michael Cheika.

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The organisers of Super Rugby are investigating a complaint made against Waratahs coach Michael Cheika after the side's spiteful clash with the Sharks on Saturday.

South African broadcaster Super Sport has alleged to SANZAR that Cheika had a brief verbal confrontation with a camera operator during the match at Kings Park Stadium.

Cheika had left the coaches box and walked down to the pitch to talk to defence coach Nathan Grey, who was running the water during the game.

A Super Sport spokesman confirmed on Tuesday that the company had lodged a complaint with match commissioner Piet Strydom, who in turn conveyed it to SANZAR.

"There was a confrontation with the cameraman, the coach objected to Super Sport filming him and he approached and abused him," the spokesman, Clinton van der Berg, said.

"A couple of choice words were used. Where Super Sport draws the line is being threatened."

The Waratahs and Cheika were contacted for comment.

Strydom, when contacted by Fairfax Media, said he had been called to the broadcaster's van after the match and told about the alleged exchange.

He took note of the incident and sent it to SANZAR, the organisers of Super Rugby, along with the match reports and disciplinary matters, on Monday morning.

A spokesman said SANZAR had received the complaint and would examine it on Wednesday.

"We have received correspondence, but like all matters of this nature, won't be making further comment until we've had the opportunity to review," the spokesman said.

Cheika was asked in the post-match media conference why he had walked down to the pitch, replying that he had wanted to get a message to his captain, Dave Dennis, who was serving 10 minutes in the sin bin.

"The Sharks captain was continually in the ear of the referee. When [referee Mike Fraser] came into the dressing room before the game and spoke to our captain he said 'don't come up and talk to me unless there's a point'," Cheika said on Saturday night.

"So I asked Dave to get involved there and say 'you can't keep talking to the referee all the time, we have to play'. The game was stopping far too much, there was too much talking around those things, which hurt us."

The Waratahs lost the match 32-10. Sharks coach Jake White needled Cheika in the post-match press conference, referring to the pane of glass the NSW coach broke in the coaches box at Canberra Stadium three weeks ago.

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Cheika responded saying he considered White's attention a compliment.

- Sydney Morning Herald

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