“South African Rugby Union’s decision to withdraw Tel Aviv Heats invitation is embarrassing”

News Sport

Tebogo Msimanga

SA Jewish Board of Deputies says the decision of the South African Rugby Union (SARU) to withdraw its Mzanzi Challenge invitation to the Tel Aviv Heats is disgraceful and frankly embarrassing. The board reiterated that it is appalling that the governing body of SA rugby has caved in without a fight to those whose sole aim is to boycott Israel in every possible forum, even to the detriment of South Africa itself.

National Director of  SA Jewish Board of Deputies Wendy Kahn said threats, bullying and intimidation have of course always been the modus operandi of the BDS movement so it was in this case as well, with SARU members even reportedly receiving death threats”.

Kahn added that having taken a decision that constitutes outright discrimination and by its very nature causes divisiveness and ill-feeling, SARU further makes the preposterous claim that it was acting in the interests of maintaining “social cohesion”. 

“A few years ago, BDS conducted a virulent campaign aimed at preventing Miss SA Lalela Mswane from participating in the Miss Universe pageant in Israel. To her great credit, Lalela stood firm against these bully-boy tactics and went on to represent our country with honour and success. What a pity that in the face of similar pressure, SARU failed to display the same backbone”. 

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