Giteau to stay with Force for 2009 - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Giteau to stay with Force for 2009

By Justin Chadwick 01/01/2009 08:37:07 PM Comments (0)

Wallabies five-eighth Matt Giteau will play out the 2009 Super 14 season with the Western Force, ending months of speculation following the collapse of his lucrative third-party sponsorship deal with Firepower.

Giteau, who is contracted to the Force until the end of 2009, reportedly threatened to walk out on the club once his six-figure deal with Firepower fell through.

The 26-year-old was rumoured to be keen on a move back to the Brumbies in '09, while an offer worth almost $10 million from French club Bayonne also had Giteau thinking.

But a Western Force source revealed Giteau had now committed to staying with the Force for '09, with a formal announcement expected as early as Friday.

But the future of coach John Mitchell isn't as clear after he was placed on restricted duties following complaints from Western Force players and staff members.

The Force have set up an independent inquiry, led by retired West Australian Supreme Court Judge Robert Anderson QC, to investigate allegations against Mitchell of inappropriate behaviour towards employees.

Mitchell, who is contracted to the club until the end of 2011, will be present when the Force resume pre-season training on Monday.

But with Anderson's report not expected until mid-January, assistant coach John Mulvihill will continue to take charge of all sessions, with Mitchell to have limited contact with his players.

Giteau is not due back at pre-season training until January 12.

The Force are scheduled to meet the Crusaders in a warm-up clash in Perth on January 23.

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