Super 14
NZRU investigate Vainikolo incident
February 17, 2009
The Highlanders' Fetu Vainikolo makes a break, Highlanders v Western Force, Super 14, Queenstown Events Centre, Queenstown, New Zealand, March 22, 2008
Vainikolo is the latest New Zealand player to hit the headlines for an off-field incident © Getty Images
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Players/Officials: Fetu'u Vainikolo
Tournaments/Tours: Super 14

Highlanders' winger Fetu'u Vainikolo is under investigation by the New Zealand Rugby Union after an early morning incident at a Dunedin bar.

NZRU general manager professional rugby Neil Sorenson said it was taking the matter seriously. "We are aware that a member of the public has made a complaint to the Highlanders about Fetu'u Vainikolo after an incident at a Dunedin bar early on Saturday morning," Sorensen said.

"We have commenced our own misconduct process, together with Highlanders team management, which will ascertain the facts and determine any penalty deemed appropriate."

The Highlanders narrowly lost their Super 14 opener to the Brumbies on Friday night. Vainikolo scored one of the Highlanders' five tries. Vainikolo, 24, was the leading tryscorer for the Highlanders last year with six and has played for Northland in their last two Air NZ Cup seasons.

The Collective Employment Agreement (CEA) between the NZRU and its professional players includes a formal process for investigating any incidents of misconduct. Sorenson said the NZRU and Highlanders would make further comment at the completion of the misconduct hearing, which is expected to take place this week.


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