Aussie pair could miss Lions visit after fracas on team bus
AUSTRALIA could be without Kurtley Beale and Cooper Vuna for the forthcoming Lions tour after both were sent home from South Africa by Super Rugby side Melbourne Rebels.
The pair face now further sanctions from the Australian Rugby Union (ARU) after an incident on the team bus at the weekend in which Beale allegedly punched his team-mate.
The incident came in the wake of a record 64-7 drubbing for the Rebels in their match against South Africa's Sharks in Durban on Saturday and both players were stood down after an club investigation was opened on Sunday.
"The club will not tolerate this type of behaviour and I am embarrassed for everyone associated with building this club," Rebels coach Damian Hill said in a team statement.
"The expectation of the club and our supporters is that the management and players in South Africa focus immediately on their task of making amends for the poor on-field performance in Durban on Saturday by making us all proud in Bloemfontein next weekend."
Beale, who will be a strong contender for the Wallabies fly-half role for the three Tests against the Lions in June and July, is still under a legal cloud after being charged with assault after a fracas at a nightclub last year.
Rugby league convert Vuna made two appearances on the wing for the injury-ravaged Wallabies last year but would be a fringe player at best for the Lions series.