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Giteau cleared to play

Photosport

Sportal.co.nz     07 Jul 2007     Photosport

Giteau had to be carried out of the Sapphire Room in Kings Cross on Sunday night after passing out inside. Blood and urine samples did not find any trace of illicit substances or excessive alcohol and further medical tests have been carried out this week.

According Wallabies head coach John Connolly, team Doctor Martin Raferty has examined Giteau and has given the talented playmaker the all clear to play in this weekend's important Philips Tri Nations fixture.

"He (Giteau) is OK. He has trained well today, no problems. The doctor gave him the thumbs up," Connolly said at a press conference in Sydney on Friday afternoon.

"It has never been red flagged with us before. It was a one off it and it does happen - the doctor is very comfortable with it. He (Giteau) has trained well."

Connolly said the Australian Rugby Union had no further concerns over any wrongdoings in the matter and any further details on the exact cause of the condition was a medical matter and was an issue for Giteau and Dr Rafety.

"He (Giteau) raised it with Martin on Monday morning so there are no concerns for us. As far as we are concerned it is all clear so it is fine."

Connolly has said he has seen similar things happen a few times throughout his career and put the matter down to the rigorous pressure international players are under.

"These players are under a lot of stress," said Connolly.

"The night before they might not get back to the hotel until midnight, he probably doesn’t get to bed until 2 or 3 o'clock by the time he winds down, if then. You are travelling all next day and then you go out - there is a lot of stress and pressure on them."

"I have seen it happen a couple of times over the years - the odd player not feeling particularly well after a game and he has had to sit down and feeling a bit faint - usually within 24 hours.

"It has happened once before with one of the players when I was coaching Queensland where the player felt faint at the recovery session the next day."

Connolly agreed that the matter had been somewhat distracting but felt Giteau would still be focused on giving a good performance in Saturday night's match at Telstra Stadium.

"He is fine. There was probably a concern for him earlier on in the week but he is talking to the doctor and he trained quite well today," said the Wallabies coach.

"He is likely Timmy Horan - he is a football player - he turns up to play and they do it week in week out."