Queensland Reds coach Nick Stiles is “extremely disappointed” and “extremely annoyed” that Scott Higginbotham has been charged with assault police.
Stiles fronted a large media pack this morning following the revelation that Higginbotham will have to front court on February 21 and immediately got on the front foot.
“I’m extremely disappointed and extremely annoyed about Scott’s actions over the weekend,” he said.
“There is so many good things currently going on with Queensland rugby union and the Reds that I would rather be talking about.”
Higginbotham has been told to steer clear of training with the squad for the next few days but when questioned, Stiles would not be drawn on whether he will suit up for the February 14 trial against the Melbourne Rebels.
“Scott obviously had an incident at the weekend, now, as a head coach, you deal in fact – in wins and losses, in stats and clear facts – the facts are the following.”
“Something happened on Saturday night resulting in Scott being charged – that’s a fact.
“Upon us finding about that on Sunday, we referred it directly down to the ARU Integrity Unit down in Sydney – that’s a fact.
“Subsequently, the matter is now in front of the courts and because it is in front of the courts what I can say and what I can’t say is extremely limited because to be honest it is a matter that is out of our hands.”
The Reds will now await the ARU Integrity Unit findings before they take further action.
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“I’m really frustrated – I’ve been looking forward to this day for months because the reality is we have put together an extremely competitive squad,” Stiles said.
“Scott is extremely disappointed with what he did on the weekend and it’s meant that it has brought this press conference about rather than talking about the good things going on with Queensland rugby right now.”