Cape Town - Dan Retief, one of South Africa’s pre-eminent sports journalists, has jumped to the defence of former Springbok captain Bob Skinstad after the latter's use of the word 'coconut' while commentating on a Super Rugby match.VIDEO: Lelia Masaga tackles Lwazi Mvovo
Skinstad apologised on Monday
for using the term in the match between the Sharks and Chiefs in Durban on Saturday.
Skinstad used the word after Chiefs wing Lelia Masaga clashed heads with Sharks opponent Lwazi Mvovo while attempting to field a high ball. Both players were injured and left the field.
"Lelia Masaga has gone head high in an absolute coconut tackle straight onto Lwazi Mvovo and tried to take his head off," Skinstad said at the time.
Later Skinstad tweeted that he had misunderstood the meaning after former Chiefs loose forward Scott Waldrom tweeted: "Does the SA commentator know that the term 'coconut tackle' is actually a derogatory term?"
Skinstad replied: "Heard the term and thought it meant aiming for the 'nut' - no harm meant sorry."
Retief on Monday took to Twitter and wrote: Have to feel for Bob Skinstad, to infer that he is racist is way off the mark - in fact one of the most socially sensitive Boks I dealt with.
Retief went on to add that: Kitch Christie also got into hot water for 'coconut tackle' after the 1/4 final against Samoa at Ellis Park in 95 - Pat Lam was their captain.Click HERE to follow Dan Retief on Twitter
Click HERE to follow Bob Skinstad on Twitter