Ashwin Willemse's live walk-off

Ashwin Willemse's live walk-off

Former South Africa winger Ashwin Willemse walked out of a live Super Rugby TV show Saturday, saying he was "undermined" and "patronised" by fellow analysts Nick Mallett and Naas Botha.

Ashwin Willemse
Photo: Trevor Cramer

The incident happened as the trio were reviewing a match in which Golden Lions defeated ACT Brumbies 42-24 at Ellis Park in Johannesburg.

Asked to comment on the game, Willemse said he “cannot work with people who undermine other people".

He also spoke of being called a "quota" Springbok, referring to a defunct system that ensured a certain number of black players were chosen for national teams.

Willemse added on air that he refused “to be patronised by two individuals who played in an apartheid/segregated era."

Neither Botha nor Mallett used the word "quota" during the show.

Black players were barred from representing the Springboks during apartheid and the majority of the current side is white despite 90 percent of the population being black. 

Broadcasters SuperSport said "they were aware of the on-air incident and are looking into the matter". 

Social media was divided with some believing Willemse should have stayed and stood his ground while others backed his decision to walk off.

Other tweets called for Botha and Mallett, to be fired.

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