The Australian Rugby Union has been rocked by the news that Wallabies and Waratahs playmaker Kurtley Beale has been charged with assault, following the Quade Cooper’s recent incident.
Beale’s immediate playing future has been placed in jeopardy following an incident arising from a family birthday party in western Sydney in July.
The 20-year-old Waratahs flyhalf, who made his Wallabies debut just last month, has been charged with common assault over what is understood to be an alleged domestic violence.
Beale is due to face Mt Druitt Local Court on January 13.
Beale’s agent Isaac Moses and the barrister representing him, Stephen Stanton, were both unavailable for comment but according to an ARU statement, the flyhalf plans to fight the charge.
“Kurtley has told us he will vigorously defend the charge and denies the allegation,” said a spokesman last night.
“He is entitled under the justice system to the presumption of innocence.”
The ARU said Beale had been instructed to take extended leave from Waratahs training and only resume his Super 14 preparations after his matter had been aired in court.
“Obviously the ARU and the NSWRU are concerned one of our players will be facing court next month and the nature of the charge,” the ARU spokesman said.
“Officials have spoken to Kurtley over the last 24 hours. As a result of these discussions we have reached mutual agreement that as the court appearance follows only a few days after his scheduled return to Waratahs training it would be sensible for Kurtley to stay on leave until after the court appearance.”
Already battling unwanted headlines after Cooper’s arrest and burglary charge, the ARU has not ruled out internal disciplinary action against Beale but will wait until after his court appearance to begin their own proceedings.
“Under ARU code of conduct protocols the matter will also be referred to a disciplinary tribunal established by the NSWRU,” the spokesman said.
“However any review by a rugby disciplinary tribunal under the code of conduct would only follow resolution of the matter now in the courts.”Tweet