Top 14
Guildford admits 'slip-ups' in alcohol battle
ESPN Staff
January 15, 2014
Zac Guildford says he is "feeling much healthier in myself and more confident" as he battles alcoholism © Getty Images

Zac Guildford must "build a few more" support structures when he takes up his contract with Top 14 club Clermont Auvergne in August, the former All Blacks winger having admitted that he has had "a couple of slip-ups" in his battle against alcoholism.

Guildford admitted publicly last year that he was an alcoholic, after the New Zealand Rugby Union reinstated his contract following behavioural breaches, and he told Fairfax Media in an interview published at the weekend that he now had "great support structures" at home and was "feeling pretty confident in myself".

"I'm not going to lie," Guildford said."I haven't been perfect. There's been a few little slip-ups on the way, but I'm feeling much healthier in myself and more confident. I'm willing to move on and live a better lifestyle."

Guildford said he did not "want to return to" his life as an alcoholic, and he was "more aware of my surroundings and what I can and can't do".

Todd Blackadder, Guildford's Super Rugby coach, said the winger would have the Crusaders' support for life and that he would be welcomed back with open arms if he wanted to return to New Zealand from France.

"The world's his oyster," Blackadder said, noting that Guildford was "maturing, he's making better decisions".

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd

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