Adam Ashley-Cooper and Kurtley Beale will play no part for Australia against England after boss Michael Cheika dropped the experienced duo for bringing women back to the team hotel last weekend.
The offence was deemed to be a breach of team protocol and meant the backs were not even considered for selection.
Just a day before the final Quilter Autumn International, the already incredible scandal gets even more bizarre as it was revealed one of the women was Ashley-Cooper’s sister-in-law.
It is understood the pair brought a group of three women – Ashley-Cooper’s sister-in-law and two of her friends – back to the team hotel in Newport in the hours after the 9-6 defeat against Wales on 10 November in Cardiff.
Although the three women left the hotel by 10:30pm that night, the team’s rules state that no guests are allowed at any time and after senior players including captain Michael Hooper, David Pocock, Allan Alaalatoa, Samu Kervi and Nick Phipps escalated it to Cheika, a decision was taken to ban them from selection for one Test.
With Pocock already unavailable for the crunch game at Twickenham, the Australia boss was made aware of the indiscretion on Monday, when other senior players approached him after deeming their actions unacceptable given it went against their own rules.
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He said: “”It’s a relatively minor rule we have and no third parties are involved, it’s just inside our team.
“The leadership group came to me earlier in the week and asked me to deal with it in a way I thought was appropriate and I thought this was the appropriate way.”
Beale has a great record against England, scoring twice in 2010 before helping dump Stuart Lancaster’s side out of the World Cup in 2015.