Canada lock Josh Larsen earned praise on social media after walking into the South Africa changing room to apologise for his red card offence in their Rugby World Cup pool match.
Larsen became the latest player to be shown a straight red card at the tournament in Japan after a tackle on Thomas Du Toit. The lock was sent off by referee Luke Pearce as Canada went on to lose 66-7.
“I just wanted to come in and apologise for my red card tonight,” Larsen told the Springboks in the dressing room.
“I’m pretty gutted about it, but I just wanted to come in and apologise to you guys face to face and wish you all the best for the rest of the tournament.”
Josh Larsen visited the Boks’ change room after the match to apologise to Thomas du Toit. This is what rugby is all about. Thanks Josh and well done to @RugbyCanada on your RWC campaign, and thank you for a great game of rugby!#StrongerTogether pic.twitter.com/y0R2RSbJYC
— Springboks (@Springboks) October 9, 2019
Social media users described the act as “great sportsmanship”, with another adding: “This is what the game we love is all about, what a guy!”
The 2019 tournament has already seen the more red cards than any previous editions, even before the pool stage has finished, thanks to new guidelines for referees regarding high tackles.
England’s Owen Farrell has been on the receiving end of two red-card challenges, with Argentina and USA being reduced to 14 men in each case as a result.