Aaron Cruden’s failure to catch New Zealand’s flight to Argentina for their upcoming Rugby Championship matches after a drinking session certainly shocked the rugby world, but it is not the first time an All Black has been involved in an alcohol-fuelled incident.
In fact, Cruden joins a rather illustrious-yet-infamous list of big name Kiwis that have fallen foul of the expected behaviour when representing the silver fern.
Cruden’s team-mates Aaron Smith, Cory Jane and Israel Dagg have all been punished by the New Zealand Rugby Union in the past, while a number of former players can resonate with Cruden’s recent antics.
Here’s a timeline of the most famous incidents when a boozed-up All Black has landed himself in hot water.
2013 – Former New Zealand scrum-half Byron Kelleher was arrested in France after allegedly driving his car on the wrong side of the road while being four times over the legal drink driving limit. Kelleher left Top 14 side Stade Francais in 2012.
2012 – Current first-choice scrum-half Aaron Smith was sanctioned by the team management for a late night “breach in management” following the 21-5 win over Argentina. Reported to have missed a curfew, Smith was dropped to the bench for the next game against South Africa.
2011 –Wing Cory Jane and full-back Israel Dagg were both punished during the 2011 Rugby World Cup for spending a night out on the town in their homeland. Jane would go on to play in the 33-10 quarter-final victory over Argentina while Dagg missed out through injury.
2011 –Wing Zac Guildford admitted he was an alcoholic after a drink-fuelled incident in Rarotonga. Guildford walked into a local bar intoxicated, naked and bleeding before assaulting two tourists. He would go on to apologise for his behaviour and agree to give up alcohol. The former All Black joined Clermont Auvergne, and was the victim of a street attack earlier this month.
2008 – Scrum-half Jimmy Cowan was ordered to stop drinking by the NZRU and fined $3,000 (£1,491) after he was repeatedly arrested for his behaviour while drunk.
2007 –Former wing Doug Howlett didn’t respond to the All Blacks’ 2007 World Cup exit too well, as he jumped on two cars in London following the quarter-final defeat to France in Cardiff.
2007 – Second-row Ali Williams was sent home from the Auckland Blues’ tour of South Africa during the Super Rugby campaign after disciplinary indiscretions, which included late-night drinking.
2005 – Full-back Mils Muliaina and former prop Tony Coughlan were disciplined after they urinated in public bars.
1999 –Norm Hewitt smashed through the glass door of a house in Queenstown after a late-night drinking session. Hewitt would go on to make a public apology, and become a keen advocator of changing drinking habits in rugby.
1972 – Former prop Keith Murdoch was sent home from a tour of the United Kingdon after he punched a security guard at a hotel in Cardiff.Reuse content