Rugby players swept out to sea

Updated: March 27, 2012

After going for a post training swim; a team of rugby players were swept out to sea on a South Africa beach.

One player is confirmed to have drowned with five still missing.  John Fletcher, coordinator for the Coastal Water Rescue Squad, said that volunteers rescued 15 of the swimmers but were unable to resuscitate one of them.  Strong winds are reported to have been responsible for the rough conditions on the water.

Mncedisi Mazomba, a player-manager for the Motherwell Rugby Football Club, said city officials have arranged for counseling for relatives of the dead man and for those missing and presumed dead.

The club was formed in 1992 as an outlet for boys and young men from Port Elizabeth’s Motherwell township.  The club had three teams that played against minor league teams along South Africa’s eastern coast, and down to Cape Town, on the western coast.  Sunday’s session was in preparation for a local championship tournament in Cape Town.  It is thought now that the Motherwell club will pull out of the championship.

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