The party for the Australian men's rugby team apparently didn't stop after their night of debauchery left some Olympic village rooms in a state of disrepair and two team mascots missing.
Rugby Australia announced Thursday that its entire rugby sevens team has been reprimanded for its behavior on a flight back home, in which they were accused of drunkenly chanting, singing, disrupting crew and vomiting in their seats and toilets, as well as rendering one toilet unusable, according to Inside the Games.
The rugby federation had initiated an investigation after Japan Airlines complained to the Australian Olympic Committee about the rugby players' conduct. While that investigation turned up no evidence of damage on the plane, the federation said it would still take action:
"All members of men's rugby sevens team have been reprimanded for this behaviour," a statement from Rugby Australia read.
"They have also been formally warned about their future conduct.
"Certain team members will also undergo education and counselling sessions regarding behaviour and alcohol consumption."
The rugby players would have been returning from a disappointing showing in Tokyo, where they were beat 19-0 by gold medalist Fiji in the first round of knockout play.
Japan Airlines is now reportedly insisting that the Australian Olympic Committee have a liaison on board for each flight containing any Australian Olympians, basically as a chaperone.
Australian athletes downplay incident, claim it wasn't them vomiting
The defenses from the Australian athletes were just as colorful as the allegations. A number of them anonymously downplayed the incident, insisting the partying wasn't actually that bad to the Herald Sun:
“People are allowed to be sick, that’s what sick bags are for,” said one angry rugby player, who admitted being fearful of adverse publicity because “reputations and contracts are on the line”.
“If someone was sick, it would not be the first time, who cares?” he said.
“Who cares who f—king threw up, it’s not World War III?” he said.
“Why is rugby being dragged through the mud?”
Some went even further, however, by claiming they weren't the ones vomiting on the plane.
Another rugby player on board the 10-hour flight said: “Well, if you look at where the vomit was, it wasn’t near our seating plan.”
A rugby source said that “we were rubbish on the field, but we can hold our alcohol,” implying they were not responsible for the vomit.
The flight in question reportedly included 49 Olympians from nine different sports, with 10 rugby players under investigation. A group of soccer players, who were reportedly involved in the antics, denied comment.
Australian team partied hard in Olympic village
Whoever did do the vomiting, the Australian Olympic Committee is probably breathing a sigh of relief now that the athletes are now being holed up in a hotel room for a two-week quarantine to re-enter the country.
Before boarding their flight, the Australian rugby and rowing teams had created another minor scandal after leaving their rooms in "a messy and unacceptable state" after a night of heavy drinking. Damage reportedly included a hole in the wall, a destroyed cardboard bed and vomit in a location you do not normally see vomit.
Two of Team Australia's mascots, a life-sized emu and kangaroo, also vanished from the Australian residences and were later found in the German neighborhood.
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