Searching for answers

An inquiry into the death of Boland rugby player Riaan Loots started behind closed doors yesterday.

Loots died after allegedly being taken out by a stiff arm tackle before being repeatedly kicked in the head. He was declared brain dead two days later and removed from his life support machine. He was 24.

The inquiry is taking place in Wellington and will continue until Thursday, SABC television news reported.

Ten people have already testified – five officials, a referee, two touch judges, a paramedic and a doctor all submitting their versions on Monday.

The ill-tempered match between Loots’ team, Rawsonville, and the Delicious Club of Ceres, has again sparked the call for stricter control at club games.

The SA Rugby Union has already condemned the spate of recent violent events in club rugby. “(Saru) agrees that every effort must be made to put an immediate end to such unfortunate incidents, and that solid measures must be put in place to deter and prevent any future violent conduct from both participants and spectators at club matches in the effected regions,” the national controlling body said in a statement.

The Delicious Rugby Club had been suspended from all activities within the Boland Rugby Union until the completion of the inquiry at least. A separate inquiry would investigate reasons for the behaviour that sparked the incident.

Meanwhile, the police investigation into the incident had been completed and authorities were waiting for the Attorney-General to decide whether to prosecute or not.