Page last updated at 17:28 GMT, Tuesday, 17 February 2009

Henson's pub behaviour questioned

By Hefina Rendle
BBC News

Gavin Henson (highligted)
Gavin Henson (circled) photographed in Cardiff city centre

The Welsh Rugby Union is to question its players about the behaviour of star centre Gavin Henson on a night out with a group of Wales team-mates on Sunday.

Eye witnesses have called for an apology, claiming Henson was abusive and had to be taken out of a Cardiff pub yards from the Millennium Stadium.

The Ospreys star did not play in Wales' victory over England because of injury.

The WRU said it would want to speak to players first before commenting further. Henson could not be contacted.

Henson and a number of fellow players met at the Queen's Vaults in Westgate Street in the city centre to celebrate Wales' Six Nations win the previous day.

Onlookers said Henson, the partner of singer and TV presenter Charlotte Church, was seen messing about with pool balls on the three tables in the pub and was abusive when anyone took issue with him.

Another man who videoed Henson on his mobile says the player tried to grab the mobile and then told him that it was none of his business.

Gavin Henson
Gavin Henson did not play on Saturday due to injury

The eye witnesses said the other players were just enjoying their night out and tried to calm things down.

Wales fullback Lee Byrne took Henson out of the pub while scrum-half Mike Phillips publicly apologised over the pub's sound system.

No official complaints

Phillips and number eight Andy Powell stayed on to talk to customers. Another onlooker later saw Henson outside the pub, throwing his money around telling people to take it.

The WRU said it would want to speak to its players first before commenting further.

Onlookers said Henson, who became a father for the second time last month, should apologise for his behaviour, although it is understood there have been no official complaints to the WRU.

Its governing body can fine a player for any misdemeanours. Sources said the WRU expected all its players to act as ambassadors for the game both on and off the pitch.

While there is no ban on drinking alcohol, it believes the squad should set a good example.

The BBC has tried to contact Henson through his agent but has so far been unsuccessful.

South Wales Police confirmed officers were called to St Mary Street at around 2115 GMT on Sunday after reports of a disturbance.

A fixed penalty notice was issued to someone for a public order offence, but not one of the players.

A WRU spokesman said: "We don't know a lot more because the players are not in camp at the moment.

"They are coming back in tomorrow [Wednesday]. The plan is to ask them tomorrow for their comments on these claims."

A spokesman for the Ospreys side - which Henson, Byrne and Phillips play for - said: "We are aware of these reports and we are speaking to the players and WRU."

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