London - Australia coach Ewen McKenzie announced on Monday that six Wallaby
players would receive one-match bans for "inappropriate" drinking.
said wings Adam Ashley Cooper and Nick Cummins; front-rowers Tatafu
Polota-Nau, Benn Robinson and Paddy Ryan; and backrower Liam Gill had
all drunk so much in the build-up to Australia's 32-15 win over Ireland
on Saturday they each deserved a one-match ban.
will be served in this Saturday's clash against Scotland at Murrayfield
with the exception of Ryan, who will be banned from Australia's European
tour finale against Wales in Cardiff on November 30.
our squad is required to comply with and adhere to high standards of
ethical conduct both on and off the field," McKenzie said in an
Australian Rugby Union statement.
"Those standards were
compromised in the lead-up to Saturday's victory over Ireland with a
group of players making the decision to stay out late and consume
inappropriate levels of alcohol during the early hours of Wednesday
Ryan's delayed suspension is due to International Rugby
Board regulations requiring each match day squad to contain at least
With only five props chosen in Australia's 32-man
touring squad, one of either Robinson or Ryan is required to participate
against Scotland and Wales.
In addition, McKenzie also sanctioned
a further nine players for "breaches of internal team protocols", with
punishments determined by the "severity of the infraction" and on
expectations of those players included in the match-day 23 to play
Dave Dennis, Kane Douglas, Saia Fainga'a, Bernard Foley
and Nick Phipps all received written warnings, while Scott Fardy, Mike
Harris, Ben McCalman and Nic White were all spoken to by team chiefs.
McKenzie insisted he wasn't responding to any external complaint.
be clear - these are internal sanctions and aren't a result of any
complaints or reports of inappropriate or sinister behaviour while our
players were out," he said.
"We've done this because we need to continually reinforce the need for our players to make smart decisions to benefit the team.
nothing to address poor behaviour will never be an option," McKenzie,
who replaced Robbie Deans as Australia coach following the series loss
to the British and Irish Lions in July, said.
"We've taken on the
challenge of re-defining our team culture," added McKenzie who, prior
to the European tour, axed James O'Connor from the Wallaby squad after
the talented playmaker's latest embarrassing off-field incident saw him
escorted off the premises of Perth Airport.
Victory over Ireland
saw Australia achieve back-to-back wins for the first time in 2013 after
they thrashed Italy 50-20 in Turin.
And McKenzie insisted the bans would not be used as an excuse for a sub-standard display against Scotland.
is no doubt having talented players unavailable will put this team
under significant pressure but we won't be using this situation as an
excuse," he said.
Ironically, ahead of last weekend's match in
Dublin, McKenzie had warned his players of the dangers of excessive
The 48-year-old former prop experienced it
first-hand at the 1991 World Cup when, having let his hair down with
team-mates before the game, he played for eventual champions Australia
in a tense 19-18 quarter-final win over Ireland at Dublin's Lansdowne
"Away from the field they enjoy it, have a good time, but
you've got to remember you've got a game to play on Saturday," said
"It doesn't mean you go out and drink Guinness all
night, but you go out and see what's going on, there is plenty of
history to look at. It's the balance."