Troubled Zac wins support from fans

By Amy Shanks


There has been a groundswell of support for disgraced All Black Zac Guildford online, with a number of new fan pages popping up on social networking site, Facebook.

One page, Support Zac Guildford - We have your back, has 2330 "likes" and was created with the intention of backing him, "100 per cent of the way".

The number of "likes" go up by the minute, and the wall is frequently updated with links to newspaper articles and TV interviews.

It has also sparked hot debate between staunch supporters and those who have voiced their distaste at his actions.

But for the majority of people, it is a place to leave messages of hope for Guildford.

One post simply read, "I wish you well, you can get through this ... kia kaha."

Another labelled him "a decent, humble footie player".

Media attention publicising Guildford's escapades in Rarotonga, has been criticised by many on the page.

"The media should just in reality back off and let him be in private. If it was any other regular Joe Blow it wouldn't make the news," one woman wrote.

Spin-off pages have also shown up, including one simply titled: Media. Leave Zac Guildford Alone Now.

The description explains its purpose is to, "let the media know they are out of line and just need to leave Zac Guildford alone ..."

It has 10 "likes" just one day after it was created.

Another wall, named after a quote from All Black Cory Jane called "If Zac has a problem, we ALL have a problem", has also quickly spread with 11 "likes" since yesterday afternoon.

A rap parody called Zac in Raro, making light of Guildford's latest scandal, is finding its way around Facebook.

Hawke's Bay Today readers had their part to say, with texts to the Editor flooding in, revealing an equal split in opinion.

"Uni students act drunk and stupid at times and then go on to be our lawyers and doctors. Give Zac a chance. He's only 22 for goodness sake," one said.

"To Zac Guildford. I understand how you might feel. I hope you get the right help. You have to truly want it. People will not understand unless they have the problem themselves," another read.

On the flip side others felt he should be held accountable for his actions.

"How long is Zac going to blame every mistake he makes on his dad's death? Grow up!"

"Great to read both perspectives on Zacs behaviour. We and ABs management have given him leeway but now it's time for action legally and stand down period. Sad."

It is believed Guildford is at home with family in either Hawke's Bay or Wairarapa.

The NZRU is continuing to support Guildford after his drunken ordeal last week, but is yet to determine what line of punishment to take.

Guildford's drinking session in Rarotonga on Friday culminated in a night in police cells after an alleged assault on two bar patrons.

A complaint to police was later lodged by Kelly Pick, a New Zealand-born triathlete who accused Guildford of verbally abusing her.

Additional reporting APNZ

- Hawkes Bay Today

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