Super Rugby - All Black Savea charged with assault after domestic incident

All Black Julian Savea has been charged with assault following a domestic incident and will appear in court in Wellington on Monday.

Reuters
Rugby - All Blacks' Savea to attend anti-violence programme
.

View photo

All Blacks' Julian Savea runs in to score a try during their test match against Ireland at Eden Park in Auckland

The 22-year-old winger, who appeared on posters last year in support of a government-led campaign against family violence, was charged in relation to an assault last Sunday, James Te Puni, CEO of Savea's Super Rugby side Hurricanes, said in a statement issued by the New Zealand Rugby Union on Sunday.

"Obviously we are disappointed to have this situation emerge, but we must now let the judicial process run its course," Te Puni said.

"The key thing for us is to support the families as they work through what is a very difficult time.

"I have spoken with Julian, who is deeply upset to be in this position and now needs to deal with the situation."

Savea, capped nine times for the All Blacks and a former IRB junior player of the year, tearfully apologised at a media conference in Wellington on Sunday.

"Whilst I can't go into the details because it is now before the courts, I understand that the details will come out in due course," he said in a prepared statement.

"But I will say that my partner and I did have an argument, I did some things that are wrong and that I shouldn't have done and I apologise for that.

"To my partner and her family I just want to say that I'm sorry to hurt someone that you love and care so much for. To be in this situation, I know it's hurting them and it's definitely hurting me, so I apologise to them."

Savea also apologised to the All Blacks and Hurricanes.

"I just want you guys to know that I'm not making excuses for myself, I know what I did was wrong and I'm taking steps to make sure this will never happen again and my main concern after all of this is making sure that my partner and baby are ok after all of this," Savea added.

All Blacks and Hurricanes team officials were not available for comment when contacted by Reuters.

Savea's troubles comes after another All Black, Zac Guildford, was stood down by his Super Rugby team, the seven-times champion Crusaders, for an alcohol-fuelled incident in January. It was the third such incident in 15 months.

Guildford returned to the team last month after spending four weeks in a rehabilitation facility.

NZRU chief Steve Tew said his administration would review whether young players were getting enough support once they entered the professional ranks.

"Without judging the rights or wrongs of this case, we are concerned that this is another incident involving a young player," Tew said of Savea.

"We need to find out whether we are doing enough to help these young men cope with the pressures of the professional game.

"As a result of these various incidents, we will be undertaking an independent assessment of the support we provide players from their time of induction into the professional game."

Savea may face sanctions from the NZRU and the Hurricanes.

Tew said the NZRU would wait until after the court case before responding further.

View Comments