South Africa international Eben Etzebeth has been named in the Springboks World Cup squad after denying allegations of assault.

Reports on social media claimed the lock pointed a gun at a homeless man in Langebaan, a town north of Cape Town.

“It is completely untrue and unfounded to claim that I physically or racially abused anyone in Langebaan as has been reported on social media,” he said.

“Multiple witnesses can corroborate that.”

He added: “I am and will always strive to be a true ambassador to this beautiful rainbow nation and the sport that I love.”

Etzebeth was part of the South Africa squad who reached the semi-finals of the 2015 World Cup and is now set to travel to Japan with the side, who begin their campaign against defending champions New Zealand on 21 September.

The South African Union released a statement saying it would “co-operate with the authorities in any way necessary”.

“SARU is a law-abiding member of South African society and has no tolerance of acts of violence or racial abuse,” the statement added.

“Our World Cup squad will have no place for anyone who transgresses those principles.”

South Africa World Cup squad

Forwards: Steven Kitshoff, Tendai Mtawarira, Schalk Brits, Malcolm Marx, Bongi Mbonambi, Vincent Koch, Frans Malherbe, Trevor Nyakane, Eben Etzebeth, Lood de Jager, , RG Snyman, (c), , Kwagga Smith, Pieter-Steph du Toit, Duane Vermeulen.

Backs: Warrick Gelant, Willie le Roux, Cheslin Kolbe, Sibusiso Nkosi, Lukhanyo Am, Jesse Kriel, Damian de Allende, Francois Steyn, Makazole Mapimpi, , , Herschel Jantjies, Faf de Klerk, Cobus Reinach.


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