Leinster prop Cian Healy was forced off their flight from Port Elizabeth to Cape Town on Sunday for disobeying a direct order from the cabin crew.
Leinster beat the Kings 31-10 in PE on Saturday and will take on the Cheetahs in Bloemfontein this weekend. The Irish province decided to train in Cape Town this week before departing to the Free State on Thursday afternoon.
After boarding their flight to Cape Town, Healy reviewed their match against the Kings on his laptop, despite passengers being told to stop using electronic equipment.
As a result of his dissent, the South African Express cabin crew asked for the plane to be turned around to PE, where the player was ordered to leave. Healy was forced to issue an apology before he was booked on the next flight to Cape Town.
In a statement, the club confirmed the incident and said that Healy linked up with the team later the same afternoon.
‘Cian Healy was asked to leave yesterday afternoon’s flight from Port Elizabeth to Cape Town. The issue related to a misunderstanding around the use of a laptop during the approach to take off,’ read the statement.
‘Cian apologised sincerely to all concerned at the time for any inconvenience caused. He disembarked the plane and took the next available flight to Cape Town with the same airline. He rejoined the squad in Cape Town on Sunday and trained with them at Bishop’s College on Monday.’
The comes after Leinster’s New Zealand-born duo Isa Nacewa and Jamison Gibson-Park were refused entry into the country last week because they did not have the correct visas. Although it is believed Nacewa and Gibson-Park have since returned to South Africa with the correct paperwork and both are likely to play against the Cheetahs.
Photo: Inpho Photography