Ulster Rugby 'needs to explain' why it revoked Jackson and Olding contracts

Annette Crawford
April 17, 2018

Meanwhile, French champions Clermont Auvergne have ruled out recruiting Jackson, saying speculation they wanted to sign the former Ulster and Ireland out-half was "false information".

Exeter's out of character decision to stamp out this rumour before it could grow any momentum indicates the strength of feeling among fans and it will be a testing task for the pair to convince teams that what they offer on the pitch will surpass the PR backlash that seems inevitable to come with their signings.

Rather than make any reference to the circumstances surrounding his Ulster release, however, head coach Frank Azema simply stated that his side were well stocked in that position, which meant there is no need to be on the lookout for more bodies.

The Irish global has had his deal with Ulster and the IRFU canceled in the wake of the rape trial which saw himself and Paddy Jackson found not guilty in the a Belfast court.

Ulster Rugby's CEO says he can not see Paddy Jackson or Stuart Olding returning to play with the province or country in the future.

Jackson and Olding haven't played in a year.

"The decision itself was probably the decision that had to be made, given the public pressure that was mounting and the sponsorship issue", he said.

"Quite a vague statement has been brought out". "The vast majority of the official supporters club are very disappointed".

"I think that is because they are fans of the game and they probably feel these guys have been acquitted and are being judged on their text messages, which were obviously completely out of order", he said.

"That is the core issue here and that is why they're moving on because they didn't meet the code of conduct that Irish players are held to".

"That is not something that is being envisaged", Shane Logan told the BBC about the possibility of the players being selected for Ulster again. So it's probably best on both counts that they go elsewhere to ply their trade.

But they must also realise that such a privileged position comes with responsibilities and while it is fully recognised that they have been cleared of all charges, there is a world beyond the courtroom that viewed their conduct and explicit comments as falling well short of the standards expected of professional sportsmen.

"In the odd chance that they ended up coming back here in a European cup game, with another club, I'm sure the supporters within the Kingspan stadium will welcome them back".

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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