Melbourne Rebels' centre Hunter Paisami (centre) has been suspended and criminally charged following his involvement in a nightclub incident that left a man hospitalised. Photo: Twitter/@hunter56777546

MELBOURNE, Australia - Melbourne Rebels' Hunter Paisami has been charged with affray over his alleged involvement in a nightclub incident that left a man in hospital, officials said on Wednesday.

Paisami, 20, along with teammate Pone Faamausili, was suspended indefinitely this week following the drunken argument in the early hours of Sunday morning. News Limited newspapers said the man hospitalised was the brother of Paisami's girlfriend.

"The Melbourne Rebels can confirm club player Hunter Paisami has been formally charged and bailed to appear before a magistrate on September 20," chief executive Baden Stephenson said in a statement. "With the matter now subject to a judicial process the club will not be commenting specifically on the case."

No charges have been laid against Faamausili. Both players will remain suspended pending the outcome of an internal investigation by the Rebels, in consultation with Rugby Australia, Rugby Victoria and the Rugby Union Players' Association, Stephenson added.

The incident came barely a week after Rebels forward Amanaki Mafi was granted bail after being charged with assaulting teammate Lopeti Timani. Rugby Australia said Mafi was taken into police custody after an altercation with Timani following the Rebels' 43-37 Super Rugby loss to Otago Highlanders in Dunedin, New Zealand.

"The board, management team and player leadership group are working together to address recent issues and provide a response that ultimately strengthens not only our club, but also our communities and our code," said Stephenson.


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