New video may prove Bongi Mbonambi didn't racially insult Tom Curry

New video may prove Bongi Mbonambi didn't racially insult Tom Curry

October 24, 2023

South Africa fans uncover new footage they say PROVES Bongi Mbonambi’s ‘white ****’ call is actually him shouting to team-mates in Afrikaans – and not racially abusing England’s Tom Curry

  • The Springboks clinched a dramatic 16-15 victory over England on Saturday
  • Flanker Tom Curry later claimed an alleged racist insult was made against him
  • WARNING: The embedded clip below features very strong language 

New footage has emerged from South Africa’s semi-final against England on the weekend that appears to prove Bongi Mbonambi was speaking to his team-mates in Afrikaans – and he did not racially abuse Tom Curry. 

In the 24th minute of last Saturday’s match, South African hooker Mbonambi makes a tackle on England flanker Curry along with team-mate Franco Mostert.

When England are then awarded a penalty, Curry asks referee Ben O’Keeffe: ‘When their hooker calls me a white c***, what do I do?’ – to which O’Keeffe replies: ‘Nothing.’

World Rugby have since confirmed they are investigating the incident, but now a clip posted to social media appears to suggest Mbonambi was saying ‘wit kant’ in Afrikaans, which translates to ‘white side’.

The aerial footage with audio provided from O’Keeffe’s microphone picks up what the players are saying at each ruck.

WARNING: The embedded clip below features very strong language

England’s Tom Curry pictured next to South Africa’s Bongi Mbonambi during the semi-final

The flanker asks referee Ben O’Keeffe: ‘When their hooker calls me a white c***, what do I do?’

The footage shows the South African defence scrambling to stop England reaching the try line, making tackle after tackle. 

After being given advantage for a penalty, captain Owen Farrell attempts to chip a ball to Elliot Daly on the wing, which he was unable to reach. 

O’Keeffe then brings play back to where the penalty was awarded, which is when Curry walks over to the ref to ask what he should do about the alleged racial abuse.

Rugby fans on social media have claimed it is usual for the Springboks to speak to each other in Afrikaans, and this is not racial abuse. 

One person commented beneath the video: ‘The team speak Afrikaans all the time to make it harder for opposition to understand. Curry owes Bongi an apology.’

Another said: ‘I’m really struggling so I could be wrong, but to me it’s sounds like he’s saying “wyd kant” (same side we’re folding to).’

On Monday, World Rugby revealed they would be looking into Mbonambi in a statement.

The footage shows Curry being tackled, which is when Mbonambi shouts the alleged phrase

After play is brought back to an advantage, Curry approaches the ref regarding the incident

‘World Rugby takes all allegations of discriminatory behaviour extremely seriously,” read a statement from the governing body.

‘We can confirm that we are formally reviewing the allegation made by England’s Tom Curry’s in relation to the use of discriminatory language during the England versus South Africa Rugby World Cup 2023 semi-final on Saturday.

‘World Rugby will not be making further comment until the conclusion of the process.’

While Mbonambi has not yet formally responded to the allegations, a South Africa rugby spokesperson has said: ‘We are aware of the allegation, which we take very seriously, and are reviewing the available evidence. 

‘We will engage with Bongi if anything is found to substantiate the claim.’

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