Nic White under fire over 'disgraceful' act in Wallabies victory

·Sports Editor
·4-min read
Nic White, pictured here in action during the Wallabies' win over South Africa.
Nic White's actions were slammed during the Wallabies' win over South Africa. Image: Stan Sport

Wallabies halfback Nic White has been condemned around the rugby world over his actions that saw Springboks counterpart Faf de Klerk sin-binned on Saturday.

The Wallabies scored a barnstorming win over South Africa in the Rugby Championship, winning 25-17 at Adelaide Oval.

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The win stretched the Wallabies' winning record over South Africa in Australia to eight-straight Tests.

However the win wasn't without controversy after De Klerk received a yellow card for inadvertently slapping White in the face during a scrum.

De Klerk was attempting to slap the ball out of White's hands but accidentally collected him in the face, giving him a slap across the chops for his trouble.

However it was the actions of White that sparked outrage after the Wallabies star played up the contact and fell to the ground in order to make sure the referee took action.

De Klerk was subsequently handed a yellow card and 10 minutes in the sin-bin for his troubles.

“I know what you were trying to do,” referee Paul Williams told De Klerk.

“You are trying to go for the ball, but you’ve clearly got it wrong and struck someone directly in the face.

"So we can’t have that. I know you have got it wrong, but it is a yellow card.”

Faf de Klerk, pictured here being sin-binned for slapping Nic White in the face.
Faf de Klerk was sin-binned for slapping Nic White in the face. (Photo by BRENTON EDWARDS/AFP via Getty Images)

All Blacks legend Andrew Mertens said on Stan Sport: “I’m not sure we want to go down this slippery slope, but to be fair to Nic White he got clipped in the face and it’s illegal."

Commentator Sean Maloney said: “It will go down as one of the softest yellow cards of the year, no doubt.”

South African World Cup champion Butch James didn't mince his words, saying: “It’s a disgrace to the game of rugby that a player can behave like that.”

While Former Springboks captain John Smit tweeted: “(White) just killed a little piece of rugby’s soul today.”

South African journalist Brendan Nel was also scathing, writing: “Nic White’s Oscar may be celebrated by those who don’t like the Boks. But it a poor advert for the game.

"This isn’t football. Theatrics may win you a penalty but they are a blight on the game. It is an embarrassment.”

Dave Rennie calls for more despite Wallabies victory

Despite the strong win, coach Dave Rennie has challenged the Wallabies to back it up when they take on the world champions again next week.

The Wallabies have been unable to win successive games all year, with Rennie wanting them to continue their dominance over South Africa.

Showing character in defence, the Australians kept the Springboks tryless until the final six minutes on Saturday.

Rennie was particularly pleased with the performance following their horror loss to Argentina last time out.

Nic White, pictured here in action for the Wallabies against South Africa.
Nic White in action for the Wallabies against South Africa. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

"We had an honest and brutal type of review and we got the response we expected," Rennie said.

"We're rapt with the result but we're well aware of the challenge of next week and backing that up, which we haven't done this year.

"The Africans are a hell of a side and they're going to be tougher next week so we will have to take our game to another level.

"If we genuinely want people to get behind us we have to front every week."

Blockbusting winger Marika Koroibete was named man of the match for his efforts in attack and defence.

with AAP

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