Rugby Union: Bath in 'gouging' inquest

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The Independent Online
HARLEQUINS have complained to Bath over an alleged gouging incident in last Saturday's league match at The Stoop. Troy Coker, the Australian lock, received treatment during the second half following damage to an eye and Quins are asking Bath officials to study video evidence.

Yesterday Jamie Salmon, the Quins general manager, said he had spoken to John Gaynor, the Bath chairman, since his side's defeat and that he was sending him a letter regarding incidents in the game. These are said to have included testicle twisting and that Rob Glenister, the scrum- half, had a finger bitten.

'The injury suffered by Coker is the one we're most worried about,' Salmon said. 'I knew nothing about this until one of our doctors came to see me and said how concerned he was at the damage done. Several days after the incident there was no white to be seen in one of Coker's eyes around which there was scratch marks.'

Coker, who was sent off against Bath in the league in the home draw in January 1992, said: 'It's a lethal thing to do and I certainly could not see much for the entire second half.' Coker, though, hopes to be fit for tomorrow's Courage match at Gloucester.

Saturday's video apparently shows Coker being gouged. 'I haven't named a player,' Salmon said, 'but Troy says it was a deliberate attack.'

John Quinn, the Bath secretary, said: 'We haven't received the video yet but when it comes we will look at it and obviously make our own judgement. Bath do not condone foul play.'