Family togetherness is all well and good, but French rugby fan Lucien Harinordoquy probably pushed the spirit a little too far.
Six minutes into Tuesday night’s “Basque derby” between arch-rival pro teams Biarritz and Bayonne, Harinordoquy bolted from his seat, ran on to the field, and weighed into the fight his son—Biarritz professional player and France international, Imanol—was waging with Bayonne opponents. As the Canal Plus video shows, that act of paternal protection earned the elder Harinordoquy (in a brown coat and red sweater) a bone-jarring body slam from a Bayonne player (number 10 in blue), and a less-than-appreciative shove from the field by one of his son’s Biarritz teammates. Harinordoquy Junior appeared too preoccupied (or perhaps too embarrassed) to respond much to pop’s pugilistic intervention on his behalf.
French league officials reacted with outrage to what they called an unprecedented parental pitch invasion of a pro match, and said they’ll consider legal action against Harinordoquy père (a move Bayonne club officials are already making). Father and son, however, were more inclined to celebrate Biarritz’s 21-19 victory over Bayonne—and the bragging rights it gives them over their Basque country neighbors until the re-match next March.