Tuilagi off the hook with PM

Wed, 18 Sep 2013 09:57
Manu-tuilagi-b_i-lions Manu-tuilagi-england-trains Manu-tuilagi-celebrates
No need to apologise, I know it was just a bit of fun

British Prime Minister David Cameron has told Manu Tuilagi an apology isn't necessary for pranking him during a visit by the victorious British and Irish Lions.

Tuilagi gave Cameron "bunny ears" while a photo was taken of the rugby squad and the prime minister during a function at Downing Street on Monday to celebrate the series win over Australia.

The Lions centre apologized to Cameron on Twitter and then was ordered by his Leicester club to write a more formal apology.

But Cameron tweeted on Tuesday, "@manutuilagi it was great to welcome you and the @lionsofficial team to No10. No need to apologise, I know it was just a bit of fun."

England RFU chief executive Ian Ritchie says coach Stuart Lancaster will have words with Tuilagi, Leicester coach Richard Cockerill says the player will be reminded of his responsibilities, and two-time former Lion Brian Moore says Tuilagi "has been a complete and utter prat" but should be spared punishment.

Tuilagi sparked controversy two years ago at the World Cup in New Zealand when he was fined 3,000 pounds by the English Rugby Union and cautioned by police after jumping from a ferry the day after England was eliminated by France in the quarterfinals.