Rugby ace ‘feline’ better after lion’s bite before game
OSPREYS and Wales hooker Scott Baldwin has spoken about the extraordinary reason he missed his region’s match against the Cheetahs in Bloemfontain, South Africa, last Friday – a lion bite.
Baldwin, from Bridgend, needed stitches to a wound on his hand after a team visit to Weltevreden Game Lodge to sample some of the wildlife in the run-up to the match. He put his hand through a fence to stroke the animal but it took exception and clamped its jaws down. Baldwin was quickly free but not before crying out in pain. It meant he was unavailable for the game, which the Ospreys lost 44-26, and his coach Steve Tandy described his actions as “stupid”.
Baldwin took to his Twitter account and in a series of posts said: “Sorry all Ospreys fans for letting you and the team down by missing the game through the bite! Should have known he wouldn’t be impressed with me stroking his lioness before introducing myself to him first.
“And for those asking, my hand is on the mend thankfully and should be up and running soon enough. Thanks for your support and concern.”
While the story has had many in the rugby fraternity chuckling even though it could have been much worse, coach Tandy was largely unimpressed.
He said after the Ospreys’ defeat: “When you put your hand into a fence and there’s a lion in there, you can expect to get bit.
“He had plenty of warning, so it’s pretty stupid. It’s nothing to do with where we were, it was a good environment, we’d been told how far back to stand. I don’t know what sort of wildlife programme Scott has been watching, [that says you can] pat a lion as if it’s a kitten.”
Above, the shocking moment Scott Baldwin was bitten by a lion during the Ospreys’ trip to Bloemfontein and, left, the Wales hooker during training