All Blacks star Guildford sorry for naked drunken fracas

New Zealand wing Zac Guildford was part of the All Blacks team which clinched victory at the recent Rugby World Cup.

Story highlights

  • New Zealand's Zac Guildford has apologized for an incident in the Cook Islands last week
  • The All Blacks wing is said to have entered a bar drunk, naked and wet
  • Guildford allegedly assaulted two patrons at the bar in Rarotonga
  • Guildford: "My behavior was unacceptable and I am hugely embarrassed"
A New Zealand rugby star has apologized for his reported alcohol-fueled incident last week, when the 2011 World Cup winner is said to have entered a Cook Islands bar naked and wet before assaulting two patrons.
According to the New Zealand Herald newspaper, Zac Guildford -- who has a history of drinking problems -- embarked on the rampage on the island of Rarotonga.
"Firstly, I would like to apologize for my behavior here in Rarotonga on Thursday night," the 22-year-old said in a statement on the All Blacks' official website.
"I have no clear recollection of the events of that night but there is no doubt that my behavior was unacceptable and I am hugely embarrassed by what happened.
"I want to apologize to the people who I was involved with and offended that night, the patrons and staff who witnessed my behavior, and the Cook Island people. I am truly sorry for what I did."
It is not the first time Guildford has found himself in hot water as a result of his off-field antics. He was reprimanded by team management for a similar binge following the All Blacks' Tri-Nations defeat to Australia in August.
The New Zealand Rugby Union (NZRU) revealed that the winger -- who scored four tries against Canada in his only game of the recent World Cup -- has been called in front of the disciplinary board on three occasions in the last 18 months.
Guildford, who plays for Christchurch-based franchise Crusaders in the Super Rugby competition, expressed his regret for the embarrassment he had caused his family.
"I don't want any sympathy for the situation I have ended up in, but I am thankful for the support I have received so far from so many people," he said.
"It's obvious that I need help and I want to get home and to get that help as soon as I can. I need to sort myself out."
NZRU general manager Neil Sorensen defended Guildford, saying he was a good person who is struggling to come to terms with the loss of his father in 2009. Rob Guildford died from a suspected heart attack after seeing his son score two tries for New Zealand in the final of the Under-20 World Cup in Japan.
"The first thing we'll do is find out the facts," Sorensen told the Dominion Post newspaper. "The second thing we will do is help the guy if he is in trouble.
"He lost his dad a couple of years ago. He's also had some alcohol-related issues in the past. He's a good young man."
Crusaders coach Todd Blackadder echoed Sorensen's sentiments, claiming Guildford would benefit from the backing of his friends and family.
"One thing that I do think he needs is to have rugby back in his life," Blackadder said. "He needs the support of all his family and his friends, and he needs to be in a good supportive environment.
"There's no point in taking him through the judiciary process right here and now when he needs more than that. This is more of an issue than a one-night drinking binge."
Guildford made his All Blacks debut against Wales at the Millennium Stadium in November 2009 and has represented New Zealand on eight occasions.