Sharks defend Beast
CAPE TOWN — The Sharks say they will not become embroiled in a war of words with former Springbok coach Nick Mallett regarding comments he made about their captain, Tendai ‘Beast’ Mtawarira.
This comes after Mallett criticised the way in which Mtawarira dealt with referees in Super Rugby.
Following the Sharks’ 15-14 win over the Highlanders in Dunedin last Friday, Mallett said the following in the SuperSport studio:
“The way in which Beast Mtawarira approached the ref was completely incorrect. In one instance he actually said: ‘It’s not fair, it’s not fair. You’re just try- ing to even things up’. Which is in a way saying that the referee is cheating and not officiating with objectivity. You cannot, as a captain, make accusations like that. When I saw where the chat originated from, the scrum had collapsed and Beast’s head was in the grass, a penalty was given and a yellow card for JP Pietersen. He didn’t even see that JP cynically grabbed a guy’s foot and deserved a card. So he comes in and harasses the referee. It’s not right.
“The same thing happened with their coach (Gary Gold), who went up to the TMO (during the match against the Crusaders) and had a full go at him. My concern with the Sharks is that there’s a culture of blame which I don’t think we need in South African rugby teams. I want our captains to handle officials better than what we saw from Beast this week and against the Crusaders a few weeks ago.”
A spokesperson for the Sharks told Netwerk24 that they are not prepared to debate whether Mallett’s opinion is correct or not.
“Everyone that knows Beast, knows that he is not someone who is arrogant. He is a leader who is passionate about his team and carries his heart on his sleeve and always puts the interests of the team first,” said the spokesperson. — Sport24. com