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An investigation into alleged racial abuse of Fijian Drua halfback Frank Lomani by a Melbourne Rebels fan during a Super Rugby Pacific match has found the claim could not be substantiated.

Super Rugby Pacific competition management, with the assistance of the Rebels and Rugby Australia, opened an investigation following the round seven match in Melbourne earlier this month.

Lomani was sent from AAMI Park after elbowing Rebels lock Josh Canham in the head and the Fijian international appeared to react to a member of the crowd.

The Drua issued a statement that Lomani was racially abused, with their coach Mick Byrne calling for a life ban for the perpetrator.

However the investigation could not affirm the allegations.

“A thorough investigation has now been completed into the allegation and based on the evidence available the allegation of racial abuse could not be substantiated,” said a statement issued by tournament officials SANZAAR on Monday.

“The competition maintains a zero tolerance towards any anti-social behaviour by spectators and, while the competition encourages fans to cheer for their team, it expects that respect should always be shown for others.

“Rugby prides itself on the values of respect and integrity and spectators must adhere to these values while attending matches. The Competition reminds everyone that strict penalties will be enforced for any behaviour that is likely to intimidate, offend, insult, humiliate or discriminate against any other person on the ground of their religion, race, colour or national or ethnic origin.”



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