Vodacom Super Rugby
Bulls refuse to apologise
Flip van der Merwe (Gallo Images)
Pretoria - The Bulls will not agree to a demand from Crusaders coach Todd Blackadder that they need to apologise after no evidence of eye-gouging was found by Sanzar’s judiciary system, High Performance and Media Manager Ian Schwartz said on Monday.
Blackadder told a post-match media briefing in Pretoria on Saturday that he expected an apology from the Bulls - a statement he repeated to the New Zealand media – should the allegations proved to be false.
According to Sanzar, no evidence on the matter could be sourced via video material available.
Sanzar CEO Greg Peters said there was no evidence to substantiate the claims after it was fully reviewed by the citing commissioner (Freek Burger) and the video evidence did not support any further action being taken.
“The Bulls are not interested in getting into a public spat with the Crusaders, as we always had the greatest respect for them and a very cordial relationship,” Schwartz said.
The Bulls are standing their ground on claims made by the players.
"The rules are clear and we applied them 100 percent correctly. We had the right to raise the matter with the referee and we accept the fact that there was no video evidence."
He stressed that the Bulls' players' integrity is above reproach.
"I just want to say that our players' integrity is just as important to us, as the Crusaders' players integrity is to them. I feel the players will not make unfounded accusations unless something has happened.”
No apology will be extended.
"For them to suggest we must now apologise, just because there is no video evidence available, would mean we have lied. It is ridiculous to suggest that every time there is a citing and there is not enough evidence, the other team should apologise. It is a pity they have raised the matter through the media, as our doors of communication with them has always been open for a direct approach. We would have followed the official and appropriate channels.”