England women’s star Marlie Packer has spoken of her heartbreak following her second drink drive conviction.
Packer hit another vehicle following her attendance at a Saracens pre-season friendly in September. When stopped by police the forward was breathalyzed and found to be over the drink drive limit.
She was convicted of the offence at Wimbledon Magistrates court in November, fined £461 and ordered to pay £131 in court costs and banned from driving for 17-months.
“I was heartbroken – I wanted to dig a hole, jump in it and cover myself up,” Packer told the BBC in a video interview.
“I had two drinks. I didn’t really think about it too much because there was a time gap, but I didn’t eat between the two times.”
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In 2007 the Saracens Womens player was convicted for drink-driving and failing to stop after a similar incident.
Despite it being her second such offence, Packer has not received a sanction from the RFU.
“I spoke to the Rugby Players’ Association. They’ve dealt with lots of other players, and told me it’s not an uncommon thing, it’s about how you learn from it.”
Packer then told England Womens headcoach Simon Middleton and was relieved not to lose her place in the national setup.
“They were both (Middleton and performance coach Nicky Ponsford) aware I’ve suffered with depression before and I think they were concerned about that part for me.
“Rugby is everything to me. I love rugby, and that was the moment that I knew I hadn’t lost my space in the England squad.”
Packer wants to put the incident behind her.
“I’ve been on an educational course for it and my biggest thing is, it’s not always the amount you drink, it’s the alcohol contents in the drink itself and actually it takes time to come out of your body.
The flanker was named in the Elite Player Squad (EPS) for the 2019 season.
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