Club rugby player gets stabbed by angry spectator
The club rugby incident occurred in a League A match between Never Despair and Porterville at the Alfa Street stadium in Malmesbury, and has seen the Boland Rugby Union releasing a statement to condemn the attack. A statement said the incident occurred during the half-time break when a Never Despair player was stabbed on the […]
The club rugby incident occurred in a League A match between Never Despair and Porterville at the Alfa Street stadium in Malmesbury, and has seen the Boland Rugby Union releasing a statement to condemn the attack.
A statement said the incident occurred during the half-time break when a Never Despair player was stabbed on the field before being attended to by medics and then taken to hospital, where he was discharged on Sunday.
The game was called off as those at the game were “too traumatised” to continue, while the culprit was said to have been detained and handed over to police.
BOLAND RUGBY UNION ISSUED THE FOLLOWING STATEMENT ON THE CLUB RUGBY INCIDENT
“The Boland Rugby Union mourns the shocking incident yesterday during a League A match between Never Despair and Porterville at the Alfa street stadium in Malmesbury where a player from the home club (Never Despair) was stabbed with a knife on the field during the half-time break.
“The union immediately reached out to the Never Despair rugby community to assist in any way possible. The chairman of Never Despair chased after the culprit, and with the help of players, the person was detained and handed over to SAPS.
“The vice-chairman of the club, Mr James Davids, a paramedic, attended to the wounded player until he was taken to hospital by ambulance. The player was discharged from hospital today (Sunday).
“After a discussion between management of the two clubs and match officials, the match was called off because the referees were too traumatised to go ahead.
“Randall Swarts, the chairman of the visiting club, confirmed to Boland Rugby that his club was satisfied that the host club’s safety procedures were in order, with security visible.
“The traumatic events, even though isolated, are viewed in a very serious light by the union. The union immediately discussed the incident with the club in order to obtain a detailed report.”
SA RUGBY RECENTLY CONDEMNED ABUSE OF MATCH OFFICIALS
Rugby club members who abuse or assault referees should expect to be banned from the game and action taken against their clubs, said Mr Mark Alexander, president of the South African Rugby Union (SARU) last week.
Mr Alexander said he would be writing to all 15 member unions of SARU, urging their disciplinary committees to take the strongest possible action against individuals and clubs under their authority who physically or verbally abused match officials or failed to adequately protect officials.
“These hot-headed thugs who physically assault officials have no place in the sport and should be banned for life from participating or attending,” said Mr Alexander.
“We must protect our match officials – without whom there would be no sport – and the message must out go out in the strongest possible terms that such actions will not be tolerated.”
Mr Alexander was speaking following incidents involving assault on officials in the Eastern Cape.
“Attacks on referees are rare but when they occur provinces must not hesitate to act,” he said. “These attacks have been condemned by the relevant unions and I trust they will follow through by bringing these matters before disciplinary committees.
“I shall be repeating our message of ‘zero tolerance’ for such behaviour with our members.”
Mr Alexander stressed that physical abuse of match officials is regarded as the most serious offence a player or official could commit. That was reflected on World Rugby’s schedule of recommended sanctions. The entry-level sanction for a player physically abusing a match official is 24 weeks, which rises to a life ban as the maximum sanction.
“There can be no sympathy or toleration of the assailants,” said Mr Alexander. “There is no reason at all why anyone involved should lay a hand on a match official. If it does not happen in the most pressured environment of Test rugby, why should it happen at a club match? It must be clamped down on most severely.”
This article was originally published by Craig Lewis.