(Reuters) - Melbourne Rebels players Amanaki Mafi and Lopeti Timani have been fined A$15,000 (about $11,000) each for their altercation after the loss to the Otago Highlanders, the Super Rugby side said on Tuesday.
Loose forward Mafi was released on bail after appearing in court in Dunedin charged with injuring with intent to injure in an altercation with team mate Timani.
“Notwithstanding that both Amanaki Mafi and Lopeti Timani were finishing at the Rebels this season and heading overseas to continue their playing careers, it is only appropriate, given the seriousness of the incident, to sanction both players with a significant fine,” Rebels chief executive Baden Stephenson said in a statement.
“Along with the Rebels board, head coach David Wessels and club management, we have strived this year to re-build a culture which values respect and excellence in everything we do.
“The actions of these two players is totally contrary to our club’s values and has tarnished the excellent work of so many in the club, both on and off the field this season.”
Japan international Mafi was arrested on Sunday following the incident and detained in custody until his court appearance on Monday.
The incident occurred overnight after the Rebels went down 43-37 that ended their hopes of a maiden Super Rugby playoff place.
Rugby Australia was conducting its own investigation and will wait for the outcome of the current criminal process underway in New Zealand with Mafi, who was bailed until a second hearing on Aug. 3 but was excused from appearing in person.
Reporting by Sudipto Ganguly in Mumbai; editing by Amlan Chakraborty