Ultimate Rugby, billed as the 'most comprehensive Rugby App in the world', has issued an apology following the posting of an image regarding Bundee Aki.
Yesterday an image featuring Connacht and soon-to-be Ireland centre Aki appeared on the Ultimate Rugby Facebook page asking people to 'Tag a mate who also thinks they're Irish' - it was subsequently deleted.
On Thursday afternoon, Ultimate Rugby - which is part-owned by Brian O'Driscoll - said that the image had been posted by a young New Zealand-based employee.
— John Muldoon (@JohnMuldoon8) November 1, 2017
It was added that the employee had apologised directly to Connacht captain John Muldoon who had objected to the image, calling it "shameful".
All of us at Ultimate Rugby would like to apologise for any hurt caused by the post on our Facebook page regarding Bundee Aki's call up to the latest Ireland squad.
The image originating from the Instagram account @rugbymemesofficial was reposted to our channel by our young NZ based employee who manages our SH coverage.
When the rest of the UR team discovered the post, we removed it from our social media channels as we do not condone any of the perceived undertones from the image in question.
Our employee apologised directly to John Muldoon last night as soon as he became aware of the fall out from the post.
We would all like to wish Bundee Aki the best for the upcoming November Tests & extend our apologies to anyone who was offended by the post.
Ultimate Rugby HQ
Aki, who was born in New Zealand, was last week named in the Ireland squad for the November internationals against South Africa, Argentina and Fiji. He became eligible to play for Ireland last month under the three-year residency rule.
Photo by Diarmuid Greene/Sportsfile