The Springboks hooker was replaced by Deon Fourie after just two minutes of action
It’s a dubious record – as we saw a Shannon Frizell yellow card just two minutes into the Rugby World Cup final, for a dangerous clear out on Bongi Mbonambi, he became only the second man in history to get any card in a World Cup final.
Not only that, but the rolling clear out that landed on Mbonambi’s lower leg forced the hooker to leave the field for medical attention.
World Cup final referee Wayne Barnes made the ruling, saying in real-time: “The can’t drop their weight on to a player’s legs. Foul play, not an attempt to roll.”
Barnes also said, “Take as long as you need, Bongi,” however the hooker was forced off.
The yellow card went to a review to decide if it would be upgraded to a red, however the message was passed down to the officials on the field to keep it as a yellow.
“It will remain a yellow card as he’s not targeting the lower leg but he falls on the lower leg as part of the clearout,” explained TMO Tom Foley, part of the all-English and Premiership officiating team.
Mbonambi leaves field in World Cup final
Mbonambi was replaced by substitute hooker Deon Fourie. Considered something of a versatile figure, Fourie is more known for his play in the back-row.
On the eighth minute, though, from a lineout, Fourie opted to go quickly and pass to his team-mate, without any lift.
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The make-up of the Springboks bench has been a source of deep interest in the build-up to this World Cup final as the coaches of the Boks opted for a 7-1 split on bench.
They won’t have expected to make use of their substitutes so early, however.
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