3 Jul 2009

Tuqiri remains quiet on loss of job

6:49 am on 3 July 2009

Lote Tuqiri and his representatives have declined to take up an invitation from Australian rugby boss John O'Neill to make public details of the incident which resulted in the Wallaby winger's contract being torn up.

O'Neill refused to disclose the reason for Tuqiri's sacking at a tense media conference yesterday, at which he said it was up to Tuqiri or his management to reveal what had happened.

Bailed up by reporters at the front of his Sydney home, Tuqiri refused to shed any light on what had led to his sacking.

The winger says it's a legal matter and it's with his lawyers.

O'Neill did confirm that Tuqiri's behaviour was not a police matter, other players were not involved, the winger had received a warning in writing in 2007 and that Super 14 franchise NSW had been consulted and agreed with the decision.

Tuqiri's earns a reported 700 thousand dollars a year.

Wallabies coach Robbie Deans denies Tuqiri's non-selection for Australia's first four internationals this year had been designed to phase the 29-year-old out.

Tuqiri's options for the future appeared to narrow to French or Japanese rugby, with nearly all NRL clubs saying they would not be able to fit him under the salary cap despite league boss David Gallop flagging the possibility of him playing after the June 30 contracts deadline.