March 27, 2019

Clermont Are Leading The Chase To Sign Paddy Jackson

15 April 2018, 03:56 | Cameron Gross

Stuart Olding

Stuart Olding

It is understood that Ulster Rugby players Paddy Jackson and Stuart Olding are to leave the club.

The Ireland internationals were cleared of rape at Belfast Crown Court last month, with Jackson also found not guilty of sexual assault.

In a statement, the IRFU and Ulster rugby said they acknowledge their responsibility and commitment to the core values of the game.

However, during the trial, WhatsApp messages sent by the duo were made public and due to the nature of these messages, the pair have been "sacked" from Ulster due to breaching the IRFU's and Ulster Rugby's core values - Respect, Inclusivity and Integrity.

"As the representative body for Ireland's professional rugby players, we will now take time to examine the way the review process was carried out by the IRFU". I am truly sorry.

After Ulster's stay of execution win over Ospreys, the Ravenhill mood should have been jubilant at the whistle, but it wasn't.

Stuart Olding also issued a statement expressing his regret.

Olding said: "I said outside court that the Stuart Olding that you read about in the trial is not the real Stuart Olding".

It has also been confirmed that Ulster winger Craig Gilroy has been sanctioned following a review of a text message in connection with the alleged incident in 2016 and will be unavailable for team selection until April 26.

However, it is believed an official statement from Ulster and the IRFU won't come until Saturday at the earliest. Routinely, Ulster supporters have learnt from Dublin based journalists the latest and breaking news about their Belfast based club - whether it be the arrival of Les Kiss, the departure of Ruan Pienaar or the current shortlist to replace Jonno Gibbes - the news emanates from Dublin - showing clearly where decision making power lies.

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