Sharks de­fend Beast

Lesotho Times - - Sport -

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

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