Respected rugby scribe Brendan Gallagher has continued his fascinating series in which he ranks players from down the years. This time it’s the biggest scandals.
We’ll have our own look through his top five, but to read the full article head over and subscribe to the UK’s best-selling rugby publication, on-sale every Sunday.
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5. Battle of Brive
One of the most infamous matches in European rugby history that put three Brive internationals in hospital and three Pontypridd players in court.
Incidents on and off the pitch at Brive in 1997 during the European Cup tie tarnished the competition’s reputation.
‘The Battle of Brive’ went down in rugby folklore both sides of the Channel, not just for the Heineken Cup punch-up on the field, but the Wild West-style saloon brawl afterwards in Le Bar Toulzac. In the aftermath of the dust-up, Brive captain Philippe Carbonneau, needed hospital treatment for a broken nose, as did Christophe Lamaison, his colleague in the French Test side.
A third international, David Venditti, suffered a bite wound to his hand and was also treated.