Ulster Rugby 'needs to explain' why it revoked Jackson and Olding contracts

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In arriving at this decision, the Irish Rugby Football Union and Ulster Rugby acknowledge our responsibility and commitment to the core values of the game: respect, inclusivity and integrity.

Paddy Jackson of Ulster during the Guinness PRO12 Round 19 match between Ulster and Cardiff Blues at the Kingspan Stadium in Belfast.

It was confirmed on Saturday morning in a joint statement by the IRFU and Ulster Rugby that players Paddy Jackson and Stuart Olding had had their contracts revoked.

Ulster CEO Shane Logan said that Ulster and the IRFU were in agreement on the stance of neither player having a future with either team.

Logan also rejected criticism that the two players, whose contracts were revoked at the weekend, had been effectively hung out to dry by their club and country. It's fake news.' The reigning Top 14 champions are one of a number of clubs linked with Jackson since the cancellation of his Ulster and IRFU contract over the weekend.

"It is probably best on both counts that [Jackson and Olding] go elsewhere to ply their trade, and I don't think they will be short of offers either", he told RTÉ's Today with Seán O'Rourke show.

In a statement on the club's website, Clermont head coach Franck Azéma says the rumours about their interest in Jackson was "false information" and insists that they're well stocked for cover in the position.

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"A couple of players made serious errors of judgement".

"I hope that they will learn from that and I hope they fulfil their potential going forward".

However, Logan batted away claims that the Ireland Rugby Football Union had caved in to the baying Twitter mob or that the decision was motivated by money.

"No sponsor including Bank of Ireland drove the decision", he told the Press Association.

However, some details of the trial, including degrading and offensive Whatsapp messages exchanged between the players and their friends, including Mr Gilroy, were areas of concerns for a range of sponsors of the sides, women's rights activists and many in wider society.

Ulster and Ireland teammates Jackson and Olding were found not guilty of all charges against them.

"Each of them, and fair play to them for recognising it, were clear their behaviours had fallen far short of what was expected of them as role models".

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