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Page last updated at 15:02 GMT, Monday, 31 August 2009 16:02 UK

Cheating not widespread - Worsley

Joe Worsley
Worsley has been angered by Quins' suggestions

Wasps forward Joe Worsley has hit back at claims from Harlequins that the feigning of blood injuries is common at the top level of the sport.

Quins were fined £259,000 and winger Tom Williams banned for four months after he used a capsule of fake blood to get himself substituted.

"I am actually annoyed by people from Harlequins suggesting that other teams are cheating," said Worsley.

"They are not. Full stop. They are not. It would be madness to do it."

Harlequins captain Will Skinner has claimed his club is not the only place were such practices have been used, but have suffered as the first to be caught.


Quins chief executive Mark Evans suggested in an open letter on 12 August that some supporters may feel that the "manipulation of the substitution, uncontested scrums and sin-binning rules are so widespread in the game that this case has been blown out of all proportion".

Former England hooker and current Leicester coach Richard Cockerill has claimed he had stitches in a finger wound opened up while on international duty to facilitate a blood substitution.

And ex-England coach Dick Best said in 2001 that fake blood was "in common use" in the Premiership.

But Worsley insists that those suggestions do not match his experience.

"If they thought about the tiny gains they could make by doing what they did compared to the drastic consequences it's a no-brainer," he said.

Quins 'blood' scandal not uncommon - Skinner

"You just wouldn't do it. Now people have seen the consequences, I'm sure no-one is going to risk doing it."

Harlequins could face further punishment from the Rugby Football Union for the incident, which occurred against Leinster at the quarter-final stage of last season's Heineken Cup.

The RFU may take action after receiving details of organisers European Rugby Cup's appeal against punishments for Quins' former head coach Dean Richards, club doctor Wendy Chapman and team physiotherapist Steph Brennan.

Richards and Brennan received bans of three and two years respectively after initially having misconduct charges dismissed.

Harlequins and Wasps will kick off their Guinness Premiership campaigns against each other at Twickenham on 5 September.

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see also
Quins could face further sanction
27 Aug 09 |  Harlequins
Physio Brennan quits England post
22 Aug 09 |  Harlequins
Richards banned for three years
17 Aug 09 |  Harlequins
Quins sorry for fake injury saga
12 Aug 09 |  Harlequins
Richards resigns Harlequins post
08 Aug 09 |  Harlequins
Quins judgement 'strange' - Moore
21 Jul 09 |  Harlequins
Quins stunned by fake injury fine
20 Jul 09 |  Harlequins
Quins substitution under scrutiny
17 Apr 09 |  Harlequins
Harlequins 5-6 Leinster
12 Apr 09 |  Rugby Union
Players 'using fake blood'
23 Sep 01 |  Rugby Union

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