Rugby-Harinordoquy's over-protective father causes stir in derby

Reuters

Wed, 30 Nov 13:44:00 2011

(Adds Lucien Harinordoquy's apology)

Parents often cheer their children on from the sidelines at sporting events but Biarritz number eight Imanol Harinordoquy's father took his enthusiasm a little too far on Tuesday when he tried to punch a Bayonne player during the Basque derby.

Lucien Harinordoquy, 61, walked onto the pitch early in the Top 14 league game when his France international son clashed with a pair of Bayonne players and attempted to punch one of them, Jean-Jo Marmouyet, in the face.

Before he was able to make contact with Marmouyet, Harinordoquy senior was tackled by Bayonne flyhalf Benjamin Boyet.

"I tackled him because he was attacking one of my team mates. I put him to the ground and (Biarritz hooker) Benoit August told me to stop, because it was Imanol's father," Boyet told French sports daily L'Equipe on Wednesday.

Bayonne president Michel Cacouault condemned the attack and plans to take action against the France loose forward's father.

"It is intolerable. The club will lodge a complaint against Mr Harinordoquy," Cacouault told the club's website (www.abrugby.fr).

Biarritz won the game 21-19.

Lucien Harinordoquy apologised for his behaviour on Wednesday.

"My apologies to the Aguilera crowd -- Bayonne and Biarritz spectators, to both teams and their staff, to the French League and Federation as well as to the world of rugby in general," Lucien Harinordoquy was quoted as saying on the Biarritz website (www.bo-pb.com).

"I was under pressure and for other reasons, I lost control. I regret my behaviour."

 

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