Blues player Tevita Li admits drink driving charge

Tevita Li in action for the Blues. Photo / Richard Robinson
Tevita Li in action for the Blues. Photo / Richard Robinson

Blues rugby player Tevita Li has admitted a charge of drink-driving, which his coach says was a "minor misdemeanour".

In the Manukau District Court today, New Zealand under-20 and Blues wing Li, 19, pleaded guilty to driving with a blood-alcohol reading of 45mg.

The legal limit for under 20s is zero, while the adult limit is 80mg.

Court documents show Li was stopped by police in Mangere on May 11.

No conviction was entered today and defence lawyer Richard Earwaker told APNZ he would apply for Li to be discharged without conviction at his sentencing next month.

At Blues training today coach Sir John Kirwan was asked if Li would face any action from the franchise.

"It was done in house. We stood him down against the Hurricanes [on May 31]. We see it as a minor misdemeanour but we stood him down and now we're just going to let the courts take their course," Kirwan said.

"He's pretty disappointed in himself."

The Blues did not respond to requests for further comment.

Li rose to prominence at 16, when he created mayhem for his Massey High School team against Westlake Boys in a high-profile 1st XV clash.

After just one match for the Massey Club, the young wing was offered a full-time contract with Super 15 champions the Chiefs.

But he decided to wait until his home-town team came calling, and made his Blues debut against France last year before impressing for the national under-20 team at the just completed Junior World Cup.

Other rugby figures in the dock for drink-driving:

* Cancer-stricken former Blues player Kurtis Haiu was accused of drink-driving on Albert St, Auckland, in April 2012. The charge was dismissed when police offered no evidence.

* Hurricanes player David Smith was fined $800 and disqualified for nine months for drink-driving in Wellington in 2009.

* Former Auckland NPC coach Wayne Pivac was this year fined $1050 and disqualified for nine months for drink-driving on Auckland's North Shore.

- APNZ

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