Guildford stood down after party antics
Mon, 21 Jan 2013 5:16a.m.
By 3 News online staff
All Black winger Zac Guildford has voluntarily stood down from the Crusaders rugby side after a late-night incident involving alcohol.
The incident took place at a private house party in Christchurch last weekend, and the New Zealand Rugby Union (NZRU) says it has launched misconduct proceedings against Guildford.
NZRU chief executive Steve Tew said he was “disappointed to learn of this incident”, but has declined to comment further.
Crusaders coach Todd Blackadder told Firstline this morning this latest incident could be the end of his career with the side.
"We've taken the view… that is very possible," says Blackadder, who declined to comment on the nature of the incident.
"To be fair to Zac and the process I can't actually say too much. All I can say is it's obviously a very serious incident, serious enough for there to be a misconduct [process].
"I can't actually say too much more than that otherwise that will certainly jeopardise the process."
It is not the first time Guildford, 23, has been suspended from the Crusaders for alcohol-related off-field incidents.
In one high-profile incident in November 2011, a drunk, naked and bleeding Guildford rampaged through a Rarotonga bar and assaulted two patrons.
At the time, the NZRU suspended him for four matches and sent him to counselling for an alcohol problem, and Guildford said he was swearing off alcohol to save his career.
But last month Guildford said he was ending a year-long period of abstinence, claiming that treatment had made him a more responsible drinker.
"I think it's made me a better person. I've learnt a lot. Obviously it would have been better if I wasn't in that situation but as I said, we all make mistakes but it is how you deal with them," he said.
Guildford told his coach about the latest incident on Monday last week, before informing the NZRU.
"Obviously he was distraught, he was very emotional and said he's disappointed," says Blackadder. "When you know Zac, when things are on track he's a great man, and he's a good boy, but when things aren't on track… I could feel his embarrassment and his shame.
"A really disappointing week and really disappointing for Zac and the fact he'd been given so many opportunities and we're back to square one."
He says Guildford needs professional help.
"Zac really needs some professional help, because everything that's happened in the past simply hasn't worked… He's got himself back on track, but not to the point where he's making better choices and last weekend obviously was a really poor choice, to the point where this could really jeopardise his future within the game."
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22/01/2013 7:07:11 a.m.
A I G ? (cryptic)
21/01/2013 11:56:12 p.m.
Sorry Zac, your behaviour is beyond, think about it Pal' and seek help soon as possible or give up the booze' it's not worth it.
21/01/2013 4:06:24 p.m.
@Dan - I 100% agree mate , its no ones business except his why dont people lay off the poor guy its not like they are on tour or anything! what a joke.
21/01/2013 12:04:32 p.m.
Dan your question is easily answered. The actions of All Black/professional rugby players reflects on the NZRFU and the brand. Basically bad publicity generated by individual players affects public perception of the professional game and could theoretically result in the loss of patronage. If the All Blacks were know as a bunch of drunken louts then people would not support the game. That is why many of these players spend so much time visiting schools and hospitals in order to project a positive image of themselves and rugby. So what Guildford does off the field does matter and why it is the business of the NZRFU.
21/01/2013 11:36:15 a.m.
I am sorry but how many chances and help does one get!
There should not be any special allowances made for this young guy because of his career.He needs help and he will not get that until he hits rock bottom and understands his problem!
Tough but I have been on the other side as a victim of Alcohol abuse from a sportsman and they are only human and should not be treated differently!
you do the crime you do the time!
21/01/2013 10:39:55 a.m.
I always hear this it his private life uhm NZRU is his employer and have a right for their employees to behave themselves like any other job.
21/01/2013 10:04:51 a.m.
@Dan - it's because alcoholics do not make good professional sportsmen. He's had his chances repeatedly, he's had help galore and one last chance after another, time to ditch him.
21/01/2013 6:08:38 a.m.
Why are these guys private lives under scrutiny, its none of the NZRU's business. So the guy had a couple of drinks and got a bit rowdy, big deal get over it.
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