A group of spectators not usually associated with the Camden and Avondale rugby clubs have been blamed for two unsavoury incidents that marred Saturday's Illawarra Rugby grand final day at WIN Stadium.
Police were called to break up a brawl between Avondale and Camden fans which erupted outside the ground immediately following the first grade match, won by Camden.
About 15 people were involved in the melee, prompting witnesses to call police who arrived promptly at the scene to disperse the crowd.
No-one was seriously injured and no arrests were made.
It followed an earlier incident during the second grade match in which Avondale players were involved in an altercation with Camden supporters in response to alleged racial slurs.
WIN Stadium security was required to separate the people involved.
Avondale president David Brace said the bulk of the 2000-strong crowd were well behaved.
"Generally it was pretty good," Brace said.
"I think there was less abuse than in previous years.
"The crowd was fairly well partitioned with different clubs sitting at different ends."
Brace blamed the incidents on "hangers on" who did not normally attend games.
"I couldn't see it but there was allegations that abuse was hurled at players. I didn't hear it myself but no-one likes to see that.
"Grand finals tend to bring out crowds that are not regular supporters and not solid club members. They're hangers on who have a lower standard of behaviour."
Camden president Peter Windle also blamed the incidents on rogue spectators.
"I didn't hear what was said but obviously something was said that wasn't good," Windle said.
"I certainly saw the Avondale guys run off. I went down to talk to the guys. They weren't Camden players, they weren't members of the club they were just a group of guys who turned up. They're certainly not part of the club."
"Personally I didn't know any of them and they didn't know me. I had to be introduced as Camden president."
Windle said he would leave the investigation into both incidents in the hands of the Illawarra District Rugby Union.
"I was told by Illawarra that they'd be investigating as to what the spectators said and what the players did. I'll leave it in their hands. It was most unnecessary and most unpleasant but I want to make it clear they weren't regular [Camden] supporters.
"The Camden club certainly doesn't support any racist slurs or comments."
Mr Windle said it was the same group of fans that were most likely involved in the brawl outside.
"I don't know who it was but again I don't think it was any club members or players."
"It's been 18 years since we made a grand final so I think we had the majority of supporters. It was great with so many people coming down from Camden it was just a shame we had that five minutes of ugliness."