FORMER Leeds Academy product Danny Care will have to deliver a personal cheque to a cancer charity after being made an example of by Harlequins director of rugby Conor O’Shea.
The England scrum-half was fined an undisclosed but “significant” amount by Harlequins after he was arrested for being drunk and disorderly.
The 24-year-old was detained at 3am on Saturday in Weybridge following Harlequins’ 21-10 Heineken Cup defeat by Toulouse. He was released without charge and paid a fixed penalty fine.
O’Shea believes the off-field incidents that dogged England’s World Cup campaign meant the incident attracted bigger headlines than it deserved.
But Care did break the agreed team rules that have underpinned Harlequins’ successful start to the season and O’Shea issued a stark reminder of the responsibilities facing modern-day players after fining the scrum-half.
“We wanted to make a point to the whole group, especially as Chris Robshaw had spoken to everybody as captain that this is a hugely important period,” O’Shea said.
“Given the circumstances surrounding everything at the moment it is probably a bigger news story than it would warrant but we are very much driven by the values which all the players signed up to.
“From the players’ point of view they are in a new world. They get paid well for it and they have to understand they are role models and behave accordingly.
“We wanted to act to make a point that the values we have up there on the wall are not just words.
“Danny is a great bloke and he is a typical scrum-half, a cheeky chappy. It is a lesson he will learn.
“Danny has apologised. He won’t make the same mistake again. The squad all know what the fine is and they won’t make that mistake because it is an expensive mistake.
“Rather than have something taken from his pay packet, he will write his own cheque. Hopefully it will make a difference to something tangible.”
England’s stand-in coach Stuart Lancaster reprimanded Care but O’Shea was thankful the RFU decided to take no formal disciplinary action against the player.
Lancaster will be answerable to the RFU’s new chief executive, 58-year-old Yorkshireman Ian Ritchie, appointed yesterday.