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Ranting Cheika in the dock

Wed, 02 Apr 2014 09:15
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Waratahs coach Michael Cheika is being investigated over his latest rant, which included confronting a television cameraman.

Waratahs coach Michael Cheika is being investigated over his latest rant, which included confronting a television cameraman in Durban last Saturday.

Cheika has been involved in a couple of unpleasant public outbursts, including shattering a glass door at the Canberra Stadium when the Brumbies beat the Tahs last month and he again spat the dummy after the Sharks beat his team this past weekend.

Not only was Cheika involved in an ugly public spat with Sharks Director of Rugby Jake White, but he was also asked to leave the playing area after another of his infamous rants.

SANZAR would not confirm the nature of their investigation, but admitted that they are looking into Cheika's behaviour.

"We have received correspondence and are in the process of investigating," a SANZAR spokesman told this website, adding: "As such, no further comment at this time."

The spokesman declined to confirm or deny if the investigation is just related to his profane outburst on the touchline, when he verbally abused a cameraman for filming him, or if there was also a complaint from match officials - who were seen to have escorted Cheika back into the stand after he confronted the TV crew.

The South African pay-TV station, SuperSport, confirmed that they had complained about the Waratahs coach's behaviour.

"The coach objected to us filming him and he approached and abused [the cameraman]," SuperSport spokesman Clinton van der Berg told this website on Wednesday.

"A couple of choice words were used. Where we draw the line is being threatened," he added.

A complaint was lodged with the match commissioner Piet Strydom, who in turn sent it to SANZAR.

The Waratahs were asked to pay the bill to fix a glass door he broke in the coach's box at Canberra Stadium during his outburst last month, but that was not his only other embarrassing rant.

When coach of French side Stade Francais, Cheika drew a hefty fine for abusing match officials during and after the team's loss to Harlequins in the Final of the 2011 European Challenge Cup.

Former Ireland captain Jamie Heaslip, who played under Cheika at Leinster, said the Australian was not the type to keep his emotions bottled up during last year's British and Irish Lions tour Down Under.

"He was a hard nut, some would say a madman at times," Heaslip told the media.

By Jan de Koning

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