In light of an ongoing investigation into allegations of racial abuse, the Springboks must get ready for the possibility that Bongi Mbonambi, their lone specialized hooker, won’t play in the 2023 Rugby World Cup championship match against the All Blacks.
A Review of the England-Bongi Saga by World Rugby
Mbonambi is accused of using a racist slur toward flank Tom Curry during Saturday’s tense World Cup semi-final between the Springboks and England at the Stade de France. Both World Rugby and SA Rugby have acknowledged they have started independent investigations into Mbonambi.
Curry alleges that Mbonambi called him a “white c***”.
Curry’s question to Ben O’Keeffe, which was caught up by the referee’s microphone, was: “Sir, sir, if their hooker calls me a white c**t, what do I do?” Referee O’Keeffe answered, “Nothing, please.”
The English filed a protest with World Rugby, jeopardizing Mbonambi’s ability to play in the World Cup final, despite the fact that the Sough African rugby community and the general public feel that Mbonambi stated something unconnected to race in Afrikaans and that it was simply a matter of Curry getting lost in translation.
EVERY BLACK PARTICIPANT MAKES A REMARK
Mbonambi’s alleged bigotry, the investigations into it, and what the saga means for the Springboks were questions that All Blacks defense coach Scott McLeod was asked to address when speaking to the media on Monday during a news conference.
When responding, McLeod didn’t mince words and said that the Springboks would suffer a significant loss if Mbonambi were to miss the RWC championship match against the All Blacks.
“I found out about it this morning. World Rugby will address it, according to McLeod.
“If anything came of it, it would be a huge blow to them. He is their team’s captain. They would be affected because Siya [Kolisi, the South Africa captain], when he goes off, takes over as captain.