Lions not adversely affected by allegation of indecent assault against assistant coach‚ says De Bruin

Coach Swys de Bruin of the Loions during the Emirates Lions press conference at Emirates Airline Park on April 05, 2018 in Johannesburg, South Africa.
Coach Swys de Bruin of the Loions during the Emirates Lions press conference at Emirates Airline Park on April 05, 2018 in Johannesburg, South Africa.
Image: Sydney Seshibedi/Gallo Images

Lions coach Swys de Bruin insists his team was not adversely affected on their recent tour of Australasia after an allegation of indecent assault surfaced against one of the members of the coaching staff.

Lions assistant coach Joey Mongalo appeared in a Sydney court on May 9 on a charge of indecent assault but was released on conditional bail.

He has to report to the same court on June 20.

“The morale of the team is very high‚” De Bruin said on Thursday.

“I’d prefer our chief executive to answer any of those off the field questions. The morale is fantastic and high.

"There is massive unity in our team‚” said De Bruin ahead of the Lions’ Super Rugby clash against the Brumbies on Saturday.

The Lions won their match in Sydney but were shocked by the Reds in Brisbane‚ before suffering defeat to the Hurricanes in Wellington and the Highlanders in Dunedin.

Asked whether Mongalo had been suspended by the Lions‚ chief executive Rudolf Straeuli said he could not comment on the case and that they were bound by the Labour Relations Act.

Asked if Mongalo would attend the next hearing Straeuli said “not if the charges are withdrawn.”

The Lions confirmed the legal proceedings against Mongalo in a statement earlier this week.

“The Lions Rugby Company is aware of the allegations that has been made against Johannes Nthoro Mongalo.

“The company do not seek to make any further comment on the matter given that the matter is being handled by the New South Wales Police (NSW) and is before the NSW court system.

“The company understands that Mr Mongalo intends to defend the allegation that has been made against him.

"To that end‚ the company also understands that Mr Mongalo has retained legal representation in relation to the matter.”

Sydney police said in a media statement: “A man has appeared in court charged over the alleged indecent assault of a woman at a hotel in Coogee last month.

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