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ERC silent over Venter interview

Heineken Cup chiefs are currently making no comment on Saracens boss Brendan Venter's bizarre post-match television interview after his team lost to French club Racing Metro.

Venter refused to offer any opinions during the minute-long exchange at Vicarage Road on Saturday, often answering a question by merely repeating the question.

It has been interpreted by many as Venter's protest against a 25,000 euro fine imposed by European Rugby Cup for being "inappropriately critical of ERC, the tournament, match officials and the sport of rugby union" following his team's Pool Two game against Leinster at Wembley in October.

Some 15,000 euro of that fine was suspended after South African Venter was found guilty of misconduct at a subsequent disciplinary hearing.

After his latest performance, Saracens chief executive Edward Griffiths said: "That's what you call an ERC-style interview."

An ERC spokesman said on Monday: "All games in round three of both tournaments (Heineken Cup and Amlin Challenge Cup) are being reviewed at the moment, as is customary.

"There is no comment on any specific matter relating to any one game at this point."

Venter incurred ERC's wrath following the Leinster match with comments made to the media.

The suspended portion of Venter's fine runs until June 30, 2012, and would be payable only if he is found guilty of further acts of misconduct arising from ERC tournaments before that date.

Venter was furious at the performance of French referee Christophe Berdos in the 25-23 defeat against Leinster. He warned the International Rugby Board that the game was in danger of being ruined by confusion over the interpretation of the breakdown area.

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