Match bans follow high school rugby brawl

BLANTON SMITH
Last updated 05:00 01/07/2014

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Three players are facing match bans and spectators have been warned about their behaviour after a high school rugby brawl two weekends ago.

Last week the Taranaki Rugby Football Union met the principals of Hawera High and Waitara High after a fight broke out when their under-15 teams played each another.

At that meeting it was decided the schools had jurisdiction over disciplinary action of the players and spectators involved.

Waitara principal Graeme Hood said three of his school's players had been dealt with internally and were facing match bans.

Two players will face a one-game ban, while a third could face more, Hood said.

Police are also investigating an alleged assault by a spectator associated with the Hawera side on a Waitara player.

No arrest has been made but the sideline antics led Hawera principal Hans Konlechner to send a letter to the parents and adults aligned with the team.

"The issue that we were involved in was around the spectators," Konlechner said.

"We've written to them and said ‘this is the standard, if you can't meet it don't come'," he said.

No Hawera players are facing disciplinary action, he said.

Both principals said they had spoken to each other and agreed to moved on and put the ordeal behind them.

"We want to move on and look forward to the game this weekend," Hood said.

"So much good can come from sport and we are reluctant to take that away because of the behaviour of some people," Konlechner said.

Union chief executive officer Mike Collins said they wanted to encourage all players and supporters in the province to "demonstrate good sportsmanship and to uphold the spirit of the game."

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