By Brendan O'Brien
Simon Zebo has apologised for the gloating gesture made towards Ulster's Michael Lowry as he ran in the last of Racing 92's five tries in the sides' Heineken Champions Cup fixture in Paris tonight.
The former Ireland full-back pointed his finger at his Ulster counterpart in a taunting manner towards the end of their Pool 4, second round encounter whilst in the process of crossing the line but took to Twitter soon after the game to express his remorse.
Simon Zebo taunts his opponent as he scores 👈
Nigel Owens isn't impressed 😡
Simon Zebo apologises 🙏
— Watch the Heineken Champions Cup on BT Sport (@btsportrugby) October 20, 2018
He posted: “Really sorry to Michael Lowry Got too excited and I don’t do stuff like that as long as I’ve played. I wouldn’t like my kids doing that and I’m disappointed in myself .. Made a mistake, not in the spirit of the game..keep up the great work Sorry again”
The former Munster and Ireland favourite was even more forthright with his regrets when speaking to members of the Irish media after his side posted a 44-12 win at the Paris La Defense Arena.
Really sorry to Michael Lowry
Got too excited and I don’t do stuff like that as long as I’ve played.
I wouldn’t like my kids doing that and I’m disappointed in myself ..
Made a mistake, not in the spirit of the game..keep up the great work
— Simon Zebo (@SimonZebo) October 20, 2018
"I'm still sick about it, I had to wait ten minutes outside the dressing-room to give him my jersey and apologise again,” he explained. "I've played the game for I don't know how many years and I've never done anything like that, I just got too excited.
"I probably built up the game a bit too much in my head this week and let the emotions get the better of me for a few seconds. You live and learn, I wouldn't want my kids to do that I'm and I'm very disappointed with myself.
"I feel shit, but he's a lovely fellah. As soon as I went over to apologise he was very receptive. We'd a good chat after the game. There's no ill-feelings or anything. These things happen, but I'd prefer if they didn't happen to me."
Ulster captain Rory Best, who shared many an Irish dressing-room with the Cork man before the latter's move to France last summer, was keen not to feed any flames over the matter.
"We all know Zebo and I think he gets a bit over-exuberant at times,” said the hooker. “As far as I know, he's apologised to Mikey. Simon loves to celebrate and sometimes he celebrates before he scores and sometimes he celebrates after.
"As far as we're concerned, he apologised to Mikey. I didn't see the end of it but I think Simon probably feels that it probably wasn't the right thing to do.
"He's apologised and it's important we don't make what was really a good game of rugby from both sides... Simon just sometimes gets carried away. He's a great fella and you let him the odd one."