February 19, 2018 / 5:13 PM / 7 months ago

Champions Cup organiser to summon Toulon owner over homophobic comment

PARIS (Reuters) - European Professional Club Rugby (EPCR) has opened disciplinary proceedings against Toulon owner Mourad Boudjellal after he defended Mathieu Bastareaud following the French international’s homophobic remarks.

FILE PHOTO - Rugby Union - France Captains Run - National Rugby Center, Marcoussis, France - November 10, 2017 Mathieu Bastareaud of France during training REUTERS/Benoit Tessier

Bastareaud made the comments during a 36-0 Champions Cup victory against Benetton Treviso last month before apologising on social media.

Boudjellal, however, told the French rugby website rugbyrama.fr: “At no point did Mathieu Bastareaud make a judgement on the sexual orientation of the player in question. I’m not homophobic but I’ve called someone a faggot. It’s become normal, it’s the first thing that comes to mind in an argument.”

EPCR, which had started an investigation last month, said in a statement that a hearing date would be set later.

Reporting by Julien Pretot; Editing by Kevin Liffey

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