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South Africa's Hooker, Bongi Mbonambi, Cleared to Play in Rugby World Cup Final
World Rugby cites lack of proof in alleged racial abuse by Bongi Mbonambi towards England's Tom Curry in semifinal match.
World Rugby has given the green light for South Africa's hooker, Bongi Mbonambi, to participate in the upcoming Rugby World Cup final, which is scheduled for Saturday. This decision comes after a comprehensive investigation found insufficient evidence to substantiate the claim that Mbonambi used discriminatory language directed at England's flanker, Tom Curry.
The inquiry into this matter was triggered by Curry, who alleged such behavior during the first half of last weekend's semi-final, a match in which South Africa emerged victorious with a score of 16-15. Additionally, World Rugby was asked to reevaluate a similar incident that occurred during a previous game between these two teams in London last year.
World Rugby, after carefully reviewing all available evidence, which included match footage, audio recordings, and testimony from both teams, has determined that there is currently insufficient evidence to warrant pursuing any charges in this matter. World Rugby, in an official statement, asserted, "Therefore, the matter is deemed closed unless additional evidence comes to light."
It's important to note that World Rugby takes any allegation of discrimination very seriously, as stated in their official communication. They further emphasized their acceptance of Curry's allegation as made in good faith, and they underscored that there is no indication that the allegation was intentionally false or malicious.
The Rugby Football Union (RFU) expressed full support for Tom Curry's decision to raise the issue of racially abusive behavior he encountered. Curry, meanwhile, has been selected to participate in the third-place game against Argentina on Friday, and he has received support from both the England team and his club, Sale Sharks, in light of the abuse he has faced on social media.
World Rugby has also expressed concern about the social media abuse that both players, Mbonambi and Curry, have endured throughout the week. They have reaffirmed that there is no place for discrimination, abuse, or hate speech in rugby or society at large. World Rugby has urged fans to embrace the sport's core values of respect, integrity, and solidarity.
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