8 Oct 2009

Player fined for clash after drunken ape act

8:31 am on 8 October 2009

An Australian court has fined a rugby league player after he punched a fellow spectator while drunk at a rugby grand final in Brisbane, after the man impersonated him dancing like an ape.

Sam Huihahau, a 21-year-old winger for the Canberra Raiders, was heavily intoxicated when he took off his shirt and started zig-zagging through the crowd "swinging his arms in an ape-like manner," a police prosecutor told the Brisbane Magistrates Court.

Huihahau had tried to entice other spectators to join in by "violently beating his chest", but when a man aped his movements, the rugby player responded by slapping him lightly on the cheek, Sergeant Michelle Clarke told the court.

When the man responded in kind, Huihahau punched him, prompting the crowd to surge around the pair. Police had to intervene to prevent a full-scale brawl.

Huihahau was fined $300 after pleading guilty to drunk and disorderly behaviour.