South Africa has revealed their formidable starting XV for the Rugby World Cup final showdown against New Zealand on Saturday. The squad boasts star half-backs Handre Pollard and Faf de Klerk, along with hooker Bongi Mbonambi, who has been cleared of allegations of using a racial slur against England’s Tom Curry in the previous semi-final clash.
Mbonambi’s inclusion in the starting lineup follows the ruling by World Rugby on Thursday, which found insufficient evidence to proceed with charges related to the racial slur allegations. In an official statement, World Rugby declared, “Having considered all the available evidence, including match footage, audio, and evidence from both teams, the governing body has determined that there is insufficient evidence at this time to proceed with charges. Therefore, the matter is deemed closed unless additional evidence comes to light.”
South Africa’s captain, Siya Kolisi, expressed his support for Curry, who faced a barrage of online abuse following the allegation. Kolisi said, “I’ve spoken to him. It’s the one part of the game we really don’t like. I feel for him and I feel for his family. I’ve let him know that we are supporting him.”
With these developments, the stage is set for an intense and highly anticipated Rugby World Cup final between South Africa and New Zealand, promising a gripping showdown between two formidable teams. Rugby enthusiasts around the world eagerly await the outcome of what is expected to be a thrilling championship match.