12 Jul 2010

Botha unjustly treated says Springbok coach

4:18 pm on 12 July 2010

The South African rugby coach Peter de Villiers believes lock Bakies Botha has been unjustly treated for headbutting All Blacks halfback Jimmy Cowan in the first test in Auckland at the weekend.

Botha's been suspended for nine weeks and will miss the remainder of the tri nations competition.

But de Villiers says while ground replays kept showing the incident over and over again, there was little made of Cowan holding Botha back as he followed up a kick and that provoked him.

He says television took over the game by showing continual replays of the incident at the ground.

De Villiers says if television had been honest it would have showed several replays of Cowan pulling back Botha too.

He says while he doesn't condone what Botha did, if the referee had awarded a penalty against the All Black halfback the headbutt would never have happened.