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Kidwell on defence over Bromwich claims

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 27/05/2017

Irritated Kiwis coach David Kidwell has stood by his version of events over what led to the dumping of Kiwis captain Jesse Bromwich.

Kidwell announced the World Cup axe was falling on Bromwich and fellow-senior forward Kevin Proctor at a hastily-called announcement in Sydney on May 8.

It came three days after New Zealand's heavy loss to Australia in Canberra, following which the two players were accused of consuming an illegal drug later in the night.

In a television interview a week ago, Bromwich said it had been his decision to stand down for the World Cup.

Kidwell bristled when faced with related questions at a press conference on Sunday to announce Adam Blair as the new skipper for this year's World Cup.

Kidwell is in no doubt it was his call to axe the pair.

"Listen, I've had private conversations with both those guys, and they know and I know the decision we came up with," he said.

"They knew that was the decision I made, they accepted it, and we move on."

Bromwich also said he had been drinking with the Kiwis before going out on the town, which doesn't match Kidwell's timeline of events.

The coach was forced to repeat his statement that no alcohol was available to players when they gathered after the game for a team dinner.

Kidwell couldn't comment on a report Bromwich was on pain medication for the Test and was thus banned from drinking at the time.

Bromwich claims he remembers nothing of the drug incident because he had drunk too much.

Kidwell was also forced to respond to allegations that have recently emerged that a senior player broke team protocols late last year when the team were offshore.

He didn't dismiss the speculation.

"We're all a big family when we go on tour and you have little incidents there but we all dealt with that," he said.

Kidwell said the Kiwis' code of conduct was still being addressed and that Blair would play a part in that.

"It's really important we do get the leaders' input into it, and obviously with the NZRL and the Kiwis, we'll come up with a good plan there, and get it right.

"I've chosen a captain who lives and breathes those values, I know he's got high standards and that's what I want throughout the whole Kiwis team and staff as well."

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