Police to interview women over rugby player assault

Police have identified two women they want to speak with following an attack on French national rugby player Mathieu Bastareaud.

The 20-year-old centre was returning to his hotel in Featherston Street in Wellington early on Sunday morning when he was confronted and assaulted by at least two people.

The attack came just hours after his team's 14-10 loss to the All Blacks at Wellington Stadium.

Police said they believed the attack, which left Bastareaud with cuts and heavy bruising to his face, happened near the Holiday Inn on Featherston St between 3.30am and 5.30am.

He has now returned to France to recover from his injuries.

Yesterday police appealed for two women who accompanied three members of the French team back to the hotel to come forward.

Wellington area commander Inspector Pete Cowan said today the women had now been identified and would be interviewed today.

The three French players in the footage had also been identified but he refused to say whether or not Bastareaud was one of them.

Police also believed there may have been another group of guests who arrived at the hotel about the same time the French players and two women returned, and they appealed for them to come forward.

"We're also still appealing for the two taxi drivers that we believe dropped off people in around the Holiday Inn at that time," Mr Cowan said.

Police believed the attack was recorded on a mobile phone by Bastareaud's assailants.

The French team have not made an official complaint because Bastareaud could not identify his attackers.

- NZPA

Anyone with information on the alleged assault should contact Wellington police on 04-381-2000

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