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Chiefs CEO backtracks on stripper comment

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 3/08/2016

Chiefs CEO Andrew Flexman has walked out of a media conference after less than four minutes after repeatedly being questioned about his players' conduct with a stripper on Monday at the Okoroire hot pools.

The franchise has launched an investigation with New Zealand Rugby into the incident, in which the Chiefs hired a woman known as "Scarlette" to perform at a post-season event.

The woman has told media the players treated her like a whore and allegedly poured beer on her and licked her, before short-changing her.

"It would be fair to say we're really disappointed in the actions of our players in engaging the services of a stripper," Flexman said.

Flexman did not rule out terminating players' contracts if found guilty of misconduct.

"If it's concluded that any of the allegations are substantiated, we give everyone an assurance that we will be taking the action that's deemed appropriate," he said.

The Chiefs boss also sought to backtrack on earlier comments he made questioning the credibility of the woman because of her profession.

"You have got to remember this is one person's accusation and her standing in the community and culpability is not beyond reproach," Flexman had said.

He told reporters he had expressed himself poorly in context.

"Do I cast aspersions on her as a result of the vocation? That's simply not what I believe," Flexman said.

When asked if any senior players or All Blacks were involved in the incident, the Chiefs boss said he didn't know and would find out through further investigation.

The incident comes after Chiefs player Michael Allardice apologised on Tuesday for chanting "here come the gays" toward teammates, who were in fancy dress costume.

Pools patron, Brendan Barraclough, complained about the slur and received an apology from both Flexman and Allardice.

The incident with the stripper was part of the Chiefs' Mad Monday celebrations following their Super Rugby semi-final loss to the Hurricanes.

All Blacks coach Steve Hansen told reporters in Auckland on Thursday that Mad Mondays should be consigned to history.

"If it's true, then it's disappointing," Hansen said.

"Just kick them to touch, you don't need them."

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