Rugby: Ironic twist in Chisholm punch case

By Ben Guild

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Te Puke Sports hooker Simon Chisholm has been asked to appear in front of the judiciary today following his sending off for allegedly punching during his side's heavy loss to Tauranga Sports on Saturday.

Players who receive red cards are sometimes not required to attend the judiciary process unless they wish to contest the charge, though Bay of Plenty community rugby administrator Yvonne Jarvis said it was not overly unusual for a player to be summoned to appear at the mid-week meetings. Sources within the union said no further comment would be made until the matter was resolved.

Chisholm declined to comment on the matter when contacted yesterday.

"I've got nothing to say," said Chisholm. "Honestly mate, I haven't even thought about it. I've got other things on my mind."

Before ending the brief conversation, Chisholm asked whether the media was going to continue to write stories about the incident. When informed that an article was to appear in today's newspaper he ended the brief conversation.

"Okay, good luck."

Chisholm hit the headlines last year after being badly concussed following a king-hit from 22-year-old farmhand Uenuku Pieta in a spiteful clash with Te Puna.

He spent several months recovering from a brain injury before lacing up his boots again for the first time in his side's round five clash with Whakarewarewa a week and a half ago.

Pieta was charged with assault with intent to injure and was sentenced to 200 hours of community work, ordered to pay $500 in reparation and received a year-long ban from playing rugby.

After Pieta's sentencing earlier this year, Chisholm labelled Pieta a coward and said he was still suffering the effects of the punch. "That fella's taken rugby away from me. I get headaches every day because of him," he said.

"People don't realise their actions and what they can do to people."

Chisholm faces a mandatory two-week ban under New Zealand Rugby Union disciplinary rules, but could see the severity of the charge up or downgraded depending on how he pleads and the position of the committee.

- BAY OF PLENTY TIMES

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