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Errant prop faces NZRU hearing

Wed, 14 Nov 2012 10:33
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We've just got to make sure he tidies up his activity off the field

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Chiefs prop Ben Tameifuna will face up to a New Zealand Rugby Union misconduct hearing after yet another driving misdemeanour.

The Hawkes Bay Today newspaper reports that The 21-year-old Tameifuna, a Super Rugby winning with the Chiefs, pleaded guilty in the Hastings District Court to two charges of driving while disqualified.

He was sentenced to 50 hours' community work and was disqualified from driving for nine months.

The NZRU confirmed they had set up "misconduct proceedings'' and would look to meet Tameifuna over the next few weeks.

Tameifuna was supported in court by his mother and Chiefs assistant coach Tom Coventry, who had also penned a letter to Judge Richard Watson, outlining an "eight-point plan'' to help Tameifuna keep his career on track.

Tameifuna appeared in the dock sporting a large bandage across his nose, believed to be from an operation to help with his sleeping.

He was pulled over by police on September 13 while driving to training, and on October 25 on his way to deregister his vehicle.

He had been disqualified twice this year, at the Hamilton District Court in February and at the Hastings District Court in May, originally over lost demerit points.

Coventry, who has known Tameifuna since he was a fifth former at Hastings Boys' High School, said the plan was about "putting good structures in and around Ben''.

Specifics of Tameifuna's plan included placing him in a stable flat, close to training, access to a full-time trainer, medical staff, and a personal-development manager to help him with his community work. He would also receive peer mentoring from senior players.

"All the aspects of a professional rugby environment are here for him, for Ben to use, for as long as he's involved with the Chiefs franchise,'' Coventry told Hawkes Bay Today .

"We've appreciated [that] Ben has made some significant strides with us, with the Chiefs, but are disappointed obviously with the driving offences.

"He's got plenty of potential as a rugby player, we've just got to make sure he tidies up his activity off the field.

He's obviously got to be better at making decisions for himself.''

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