Force player urinated in Bloem hotel's hallway
Cape Town - A breach of team protocol has led to the Western Force shaking up their team for Saturday’s Super Rugby clash against the Stormers in Perth.
Interim head coach Dave Wessels on Thursday named left wing Luke Morahan as captain for the clash at nib Stadium.
The Force announced on their official website that this was due to captain and prop Pek Cowan and fullback Dane Haylett-Petty breaching their leadership standards while on tour in South Africa.
According to Australia’s Daily Telegraph, a few Force players misbehaved in a Bloemfontein hotel following their narrow 30-29 loss to the Cheetahs there last Saturday.
One of the players also urinated in the hotel’s hallway while arguments took place between a few players.
Lock Adam Coleman is believed to be another player involved in the misdemeanours.
According to the Australian newspaper, Matt Hodgson - the Force’s regular skipper who is injured - earlier this week accused fellow players of ruining the culture of the franchise in a fiery meeting regarding their drunken behaviour in South Africa.
Hodgson blasted the misbehaving players after a training session on Wednesday, telling them they were denigrating the team and lacking leadership qualities.
After losing to the Cheetahs, Force players reportedly went out drinking and broke curfew of 01:00.
Upon their return to the Southern Sun Bloemfontein hotel, a play-fight between brothers Dane and Ross Haylett-Petty in the foyer grew heated and a vase was broken. Dane Haylett-Petty paid to replace the vase the next morning.
Coleman had a minor argument with prop Francois van Wyk, though that did not turn physical and the pair made up quickly afterwards.
One unidentified player then urinated in the hotel hallway. It’s understood he was locked out of the room and too drunk to control himself.
An ARU spokesperson said the matter was still under investigation and that they could not rule out further action against players.
Meanwhile, Wessels - who was named interim coach last month after Michael Foley was fired - said the team is determined to put its best foot forward for Saturday’s game against the Stormers.
“As a team we are really focused on putting everything into these last 160-minutes of the season,” he told the Force’s official website. “We were disappointed not to win in Bloemfontein but felt - particularly in the second half - that we played some good attacking rugby.
“The Stormers are a quality side - with a strong set piece - and are trying to lock in a home final. We know they will come out really hard but we are focusing on what we can do to improve on the good things we did in South Africa and finishing strong for the ‘Sea of Blue’.”
15 Dane Haylett-Petty, 14 Marcel Brache, 13 Ben Tapuai, 12 Kyle Godwin, 11 Luke Morahan (captain), 10 Jono Lance, 9 Ryan Louwrens, 8 Angus Cottrell, 7 Chris Alcock, 6 Richard Hardwick, 5 Rory Walton, 4 Ross Haylett-Petty, 3 Guy Millar, 2 Harry Scoble, 1 Pek Cowan
Substitutes: 16 Anaru Rangi, 17 Francois van Wyk, 18 Jermaine Ainsley, 19 Matt Philip, 20 Brynard Stander, 21 Ian Prior, 22 Peter Grant, 23 Semisi Masirewa
15 Jaco Taute, 14 Kobus van Wyk, 13 Daniel du Plessis, 12 Damian de Allende, 11 Leolin Zas, 10 Jean-Luc du Plessis, 9 Nic Groom, 8 Schalk Burger (captain), 7 Siya Kolisi, 6 Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 5 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Vincent Koch, 2 Bongi Mbonambi, 1 Alistair Vermaak.
Substitutes: 16 Scarra Ntubeni, JP Smith, 18 17 Wilco Louw, 19 JD Schickerling, 20 Rynhardt Elstadt, 21 Louis Schreuder, 22 Huw Jones, 23 Scott van Breda