Johannesburg - Northwood High School will undertake disciplinary action against the parent of one of their rugby players who caused a fracas at the end of an Under-16A match at Kearsney College over the weekend.
The parent concerned was convinced that the referee had cheated the Northwood team and a video clip has gone viral of the man first trying to engage the (retreating) referee and then manhandling a Kearsney player, which escalated the drama.
While nobody was hurt, the incident was unsavoury and both schools have moved emphatically to voice their displeasure.
Northwood headmaster Paul Viljoen said in a letter to parents: “We are an educational institution and need to be impeccable in terms of the standards and example we set for our boys. It is within this context that I want to assure you that the necessary disciplinary action will be taken with relevant consequences for the parent.”
“Northwood has an obligation to protect those boys in our care, as well as those who we compete against, in addition to being transparent and honest when any party associated with the school oversteps the boundaries of what is viewed as acceptable conduct and behaviour,” Viljoen continued.
Viljoen’s counterpart at Kearsney, Elwyn van den Aardweg, said in his correspondence to parents that “the Northwood parent concerned has been notified that he is banned from entering the Kearsney campus for whatever purpose with immediate effect.”
Describing the parent’s behaviour as “unacceptable and deplorable”, Van den Aardweg added that “the incident has been reported to the Chairman of the South African Schools Rugby Association and the KwaZulu Natal Schools Rugby Association for their attention.”
U16 Northwood parent who apparently thought his sons team was cheated causes a massive brawl at Kearsney college today. It’s schoolboy rugby folks, don’t take it so seriously… pic.twitter.com/3rVSLJkFfx— Matthew (@tomato_soops) April 30, 2022
Also, the headmaster expressed his regret that “the highly respected captain of the Kearsney Under-16A team was subjected to this appalling behaviour, and we are supporting him and his family at this time.”
Viljoen said that at the after-match function hosted by Kearsney, he offered his “unequivocal apology to Van den Aardweg, his coaches and staff — an apology which Van den Aardweg and his staff, graciously accepted.”