Six times rugby teammates squared up behind the scenes
Wales rugby captain Alun Wyn Jones was sporting a shiner this past weekend courtesy of teammate Jake Ball after the pair presumably squared off in some manner of a fight behind the scenes. Jones is known to bring the same intensity he shows on the pitch to the training ground, but he was on the receiving end on this occasion.
The two second rows are not the first teammates to butt heads with one another, though.
Paul O’Connell and Ryan Caldwell
As Ireland prepared for the 2007 World Cup, their future captain O’Connell punched fellow lock Caldwell in a moment he would later describe as the “worst moment” of his career. The Munster legend took umbrage at a tackle by the Ulsterman in a non-contact session. A single punch left Caldwell unconscious and on the way to the hospital after a tooth had burst his cheek.
Josh Lewsey and Danny Cipriani
A 20-year-old Cipriani was left flat on the floor by Lewsey after the fly-half was accused of missing tackles in a Wasps training session in 2008. The former World Cup winner did not take kindly to a threat made by Cipriani during their spat and made him pay. The two soon patched things up and this fight was incorporated into a rugby try celebration.
Carl Fearns and Gavin Henson
The infamous Fearns’ right hand to the jaw of Henson is available for all to see thanks to CCTV footage. The former Bath teammates squared up to one another in a pub in 2013 before the 19 stone No8 knocked the Welshman out.
"At the end of a tough training block, it was just a shame it ended the way it did and that was my last sort of moment being involved with England"
– Mike Brown has revisited events in Italy 17 months ago when he clashed with Ben Te'o ??????? https://t.co/kxtZAM8347
— RugbyPass (@RugbyPass) January 21, 2021
Ben Te’o and Mike Brown
A training camp in Italy during England’s build-up to the 2019 World Cup saw Te’o and Brown clash with one another. The greatest irony was that this was during a team social. Neither player was selected for the World Cup after this bust-up, although Eddie Jones has said that the incident was not a reason for them missing out.
Mohamed Haouas and Bismarck du Plessis
Montpellier gave a perfect demonstration of how not to look like a cohesive team in 2018 when a brawl occurred between tempestuous prop Haouas and du Plessis during a pre-match warm-up. The entire stadium could see the prop throw a right hand before the match, although it did not affect the team’s performance as they won 41-3.
Le choc de la 20ème journée de @top14rugby tient ses promesses dès l'échauffement ! Séquence étonnante: deux joueurs du @MHR_officiel échangent des coups de poings et doivent être séparés par leurs coéquipiers.
Un sommet qui promet d'être chaud bouillant ! pic.twitter.com/5st11C5C3Y
— Canal Rugby Club (@CanalRugbyClub) March 10, 2018
Dylan Hartley and Brian Mujati
Hartley punched teammate Mujati who arrived as a new signing at Northampton Saints after he felt that the new loosehead had turned up “on a jolly”. Former England full-back Ben Foden was caught in the middle as Hartley squared up to Mujati, with Hartley punching Mujati square in the face after trying to get a rise out of the Zimbabwean. Mujati became a great player for Saints thereafter, and he and Hartley became good friends.
'You can just see Dyls has got that glint in his eye, like… ‘I’m going to kill you’https://t.co/Ju6KXEhRnF
— RugbyPass (@RugbyPass) February 8, 2021
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