Page last updated at 15:32 GMT, Tuesday, 26 January 2010

De Montfort University rugby team held naked initiation

Three members of a university rugby team have been suspended by the sport's governing body over an initiation ceremony that went too far.

De Montfort University Rugby Football Club was reprimanded over the ceremony which involved players running blindfolded and naked around the pitch.

The Rugby Football Union (RFU) suspended the players for seven months.

The university is to carry out its own investigation and said it "will not tolerate behaviour of this sort".

Players admitted the initiation ceremony in November also involved being pelted with eggs and flour, drinking a "dirty pint" of milk containing sauces and chilli powder and sliding along a sheet of plastic greased with foul-smelling substances.

This type of behaviour is in no way representative of our students
University spokesman

A second disciplinary charge involved new players being placed in a position whereby they were made to travel back to campus wearing shorts and shoes only.

Club chairman James Mills, secretary Ian Jones and player Joseph Forrisalman admitted two offences of conduct prejudicial to the interests of the game.

Coach John McLear was severely reprimanded, though he was not charged with any offence.

The Leicestershire RFU disciplinary panel also ruled the club must raise £2,500 to be donated to the Rainbows Hospice for Children and Young People at Loughborough by the end of the year.

A De Montfort University spokesperson said: "The RFU has determined that some of the alleged incidents took place and that the two more serious alleged incidents did not.

"I think it is important to be clear that the University will not tolerate behaviour of this sort and that this type of behaviour is in no way representative of our students, who have an excellent track record and who are a credit to the University."

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