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He may be married to the Queen's grand-daugher but that didn't stop the axe falling on Mike Tindall's England rugby career today, as he was fined for his off-field antics in New Zealand and booted from the country's elite player squad.

2003 World Cup-winner Tindall captained the English in New Zealand this year but was the centre of lurid headlines over a night out in Queenstown involving a visit of a dwarf-themed bar and other nightspots.

Tindall appeared heavily intoxicated, flirted with a mystery blonde and indulged in rowdy behaviour, which appeared to set the tone for the team's poor world cup performances and several other reports of off-field misconduct.

As a result, Tindall has been fined £25k and has also been dropped from England's elite player squad.

England's director of rugby, Rob Andrew, said Tindall's actions could not be overlooked.

"Mike Tindall’s actions reached a level of misconduct that was unacceptable in a senior England player and amounted to a very serious breach of the EPS Code of Conduct," Andrew said.

"Whilst we acknowledge his previous good character it needs to be made clear that what he did will not be tolerated,"

Fran Cotton, the former England and Lions prop, who has been asked by the Rugby Football Union to look into the entire elite structure of English rugby had already expressed his displeasure at Tindall's antics.

“All that sort of stuff has a corrosive effect and who knows how it affected performances on the field,” Cotton said.

“It’s all in stark contrast to what’s going on in the Wales camp. And it’s the players who have led it all there, not [head coach] Warren Gatland. That’s where the real discipline has come from.”

Tindall has three working days to appeal.


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Mike Tindall's rugby career ends in disgrace
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