LUKE McALISTER failed to turn up to North Harbour training on Monday as his son was sick, says his father Charlie.
The 30-test All Black was yesterday omitted from the Albany-based side’s squad for tomorrow night’s opening ITM Cup game against Otago in Dunedin after he failed to front for practice early this week.
Charlie McAlister insists the reason his son missed training is because of an ill child.
“Luke didn't make training on Monday for a reason that we are aware of, which is to do with his son who has been very ill," he told Radiosport.
“He was born with a pretty serious heart condition and in the last couple of weeks it been really tough on him and his father Luke.
“It's been a hell of a time in hospital the last 10 days in particular in large time blocks. That's the reason he wasn't there on Monday.”
Reports emerged yesterday that Harbour had given McAlister the boot, but the union’s chief executive Brett Hollister says there are no substance to those claims.
“Luke has signed to play for the team for the ITM Cup campaign, and is expected to remain part of the 2011 North Harbour squad,” he says.
“While Luke has not been selected for the Otago game this week, it is up to the North Harbour head coach Liam Barry to select his team for each game and he will make those selections from the wider North Harbour squad based on his assessment of the players available.
“We will not be making any further comment on this matter as our focus is now on the ITM Cup campaign which starts for us on Thursday night against Otago.”« Back to Articles
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