The Crusaders have released a statement denying that three members of their squad made homophobic slurs during an altercation at a fast-food joint in Cape Town.
A Twitter user posted that at least three Crusaders players intimidated him in a McDonalds shortly after the team's Super Rugby match against the Stormers.
Alexandros Paterimos also took to Instagram saying:
"We were attacked by members of the New Zealand rugby team in the McDonald's on Long/Kloof Street last night. As we entered, we were met with jeering and sniggers from them. They then proceeded to record as a joke (also, upon looking on his phone screen, it was recording for either insta/snapchat).
"We were met with homophobic slurs, limp wrists and high pitched voices which were clearly in gest.
"When catching them in the act, they told us they did it because we looked funny to them. They then said they can record us in public space if they want to."
Paterimos shared a video of part of the alleged incident.
Although no Crusaders players can be seen in the video, another man – who Paterimos believes to be a part of the travel party – is seen pushing the camera.
IF YOU WANNA BE QUEERPHOBIC WE WILL RECORD YOU SINCE YOU RECORDED US FOR YOUR JOKE. Long st mc Donald’s. pic.twitter.com/Uz2pRnh4XS— adam (@adamlennoxx) May 18, 2019
The Crusaders said they were aware of the allegations, but strongly refuted the 'socialised account' of events.
Crusaders CEO Colin Mansbridge said: “This is an organisation that is committed to inclusivity and is proud to have earned the Rainbow Tick certification. That is what makes these allegations particularly distressing.
“Given the serious nature of these allegations I will be meeting with the team management and players on their return to Christchurch, however I am confident in the account that we have received from the team and the security advisor who was present.”