Aaron Smith has given a heartfelt apology following the latest New Zealand rugby off field scandal, which involved him and a lady – not his partner – engaged in an airport toilet tryst. Smith was sent home so will miss out on Saturday’s Test against the Springboks.
A statement was released by New Zealand Rugby indicating that Smith was stood down from the team to play South Africa following the incident, that happened on September 18th.
Smith and a woman reportedly entered a disabled toilet at Christchurch Airport, and while in there for 10 minutes, could be heard making noises that caught the attention of a family who were waiting outside. The husband decided to take pictures and film when Smith and the woman left.
They said that they were initially not going to report the incident, and the husband even thought it was ‘strange but kinda funny’, however his wife said that the more she thought about it, the angrier she became.
“I’ve never actually reported anything to a newspaper or anything. We don’t want to convey the fact that we’re narking or gossiping about his private life. It’s kinda beside the point.. However, the All Blacks are put on a pedestal and were role models for young Kiwis,” she said.
“As such, they should be held to a higher level of scrutiny. Most people would not do that, let alone a public figure,” she added.
Smith has returned to New Zealand to face a misconduct hearing, and perhaps more significantly, the wrath of his partner, who has asked the media to respect her privacy while they deal with this.
Smith spoke to the media, making a tearful apology. “I’ve made a huge mistake, a huge error in judgement. I’d firstly like to say a huge sorry to my partner Teagan, her family, my family.”
Smith, arguably the number one scrumhalf in world rugby, has had a number of misdemeanours in the last few years, one of which resulted in a previous relationship breaking down, and the other included a nude selfie being spread across the internet.
The New Zealand media have not held back in their reactions to the incident, as seen below.