Beale fine over mid-air argument

Date published: October 31 2014

Kurtley Beale has been fined AUS$3,000 over his mid-flight row with former Wallaby business manager Di Patston in September.

Australia utility back Kurtley Beale has been fined AUS$3,000 over a mid-flight row with the then Wallaby business manager Di Patston in September.

The sanction comes after Beale was also slapped with a AUS$45,000 penalty for sending an offensive text message to Patston.

Beale was found guilty of a moderate breach of the Wallabies’ protocols but faces no further sanction from the Australian Rugby Union.

The ARU has released a summary of events since the argument which took place on a flight from Johannesburg to Sao Paulo, en route to Buenos Aires ahead of the Wallabies’ final Rugby Championship Test against Argentina.

The mid-air argument was investigated by the ARU’s Integrity Unit and did not form part of the ARU’s inquiry into the text message that Beale sent Patston in June.

That inquiry which was held by the independent Code of Conduct Tribunal.

ARU chairman Michael Hawker confirmed his organisation asked that Beale be sacked for the text messages.

But the Wallaby was fined AUS$45,000 last week after he was found guilty of a serious breach of the ARU’s code of conduct.

“We had a recommendation that on the basis of the first text, we said that’s a code of conduct violation which in our view means the tearing up of his contract,” Hawker told Fairfax Media.

ARU chief executive Bill Pulver said Beale’s fining over the mid-air incident represented the end of the matter.

“We basically see that this review process is now complete,” he explained.

“As of last night [Thursday] we have resolved the altercation on the plane so essentially we see this as drawing a line under the incident.

“We have resisted the temptation to speak in public throughout this process in order to preserve the integrity of the process.

“There are people’s reputations at stake – there is a process that needs to be adhered to, and our willingness to speak about it today [Friday] is at the end of the process.

“What we’ve done with that document is basically provide full transparency around the facts as we see them.”