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Western Force coach Michael Foley believes halfback Brett Sheehan has been wrongly vilified over the biting incident that marred the British and Irish Lions’ tour win on Wednesday night.
Sheehan accused Lions prop Cian Healy of biting him on the forearm during the 17th minute of the Lions’ 69-17 triumph, but the former Wallaby didn’t want to take the matter further after the game.
However, citing commissioner Freek Burger insisted Sheehan provide an official statement, with Healy then forced to front a disciplinary hearing in Brisbane on Friday morning.
Healy was cleared of any wrongdoing due to insufficient evidence, but Foley feels Sheehan has ended up being painted as the bad guy.
“I think there’s been a bit of vilifying of him in the last 24 hours, and that’s a real shame, because he was courageous in that game,” Foley said.
“The fact the citing commissioner asked him to give comment after the game certainly shouldn’t have people viewing him in a dim light. He did what he had to do.
“There’s been a lot of commentary about Brett and his role in it. I thought Brett did what any other player would do in the moment.
“Then you can see at half-time he was keen to play it down and leave it on the field. That was his approach after the game.”
Although Healy’s name was cleared, his Lions tour is over after suffering a serious ankle injury against the Force.