The pitch invader who cost Wales a potential try in their defeat by South Africa on Saturday was pelted with alcohol as he was led out of the Principality Stadium and has been sent death threats in the aftermath.
Callum Rowe – a father believed to be from the Caerphilly area – disrupted a Wales attack during their five-point defeat by the Springboks, calling into question the security at Cardiff‘s Principality Stadium. It has since been claimed he did it as a £20 bet.
In the 63rd minute of the match Rowe, dressed in black, entered the field on the left wing and was tackled to the ground, with Welsh wing Liam Williams having to hurdle him as he ran for the line.
The pitch invader at Wales’ game with South Africa was pelted with alcohol by angry fans
Three members of security led Callum Rowe away but fans launched pints and cups at him
Rowe was soaked by alcohol as the group of fans made their fury known when he went past
A picture has surfaced on social media that appears to confirm the stunt was a £20 bet
It is the second time in consecutive weeks someone has rushed onto the field in Cardiff – after prankster ‘Jarvo 69’ joined the New Zealand team during their anthem seven days previously.
This time the trespasser was quickly tackled by a steward, and angry fans threw pints of beer at Rowe as he was bundled away.
Footage captured by one supporter in the stands shows Rowe being targeted by angry fans launching alcohol at him as he was led away by three members of the stadium’s security team.
A picture has surfaced on social media that suggests the stunt was done as a £20 bet between Rowe and Ryan Saunders.
Angry Welsh fans have even launched an online petition titled ‘Lifetime ban for Callum Rowe from Principality Stadium’ which has so far amassed just over 4,000 signatures.
Wales Online have also reported that the man has received death threats in the aftermath of the incident.
‘Needless to say he’s really regretting the decision now,’ a relative explained.
‘It was just a silly bet he’d made with a few mates to go on at the 70th minute of the match.
‘He had no idea what was happening on the pitch at the time or that he’d be right in the middle of things.
Rowe was booed and had beer thrown at him as he was ejected from the stadium in Cardiff
Wales star Liam Williams had a clear try-scoring opportunity scuppered by Rowe’s stunt
‘He’s got a young family. His partner’s getting abuse on social media and other relations have been getting messages telling them horrible things are going to happen to him. It’s really shaken him up.
‘We’re just really concerned for his mental wellbeing and want to stress that he’s not some kind of monster and doesn’t deserve all this.’
Principality Stadium manager Mark Williams said in a statement after: ‘We condemn this type of behaviour in the strongest possible terms. He was intercepted and immediately escorted from the stadium and handed over to South Wales Police.’
After his side’s 23-18 defeat, Wales coach Wayne Pivac commented: ‘You don’t want to see that in the game. It’s very disappointing that happened, but nothing the officials could do about that.’
Asked if Wales might have scored from the move Rowe disrupted, Pivac added: ‘I don’t know. At the time, I thought “here we go”. We had a one-man advantage. I haven’t had a chance to speak to the players.
Rowe stopped Williams running freely onto the ball and South Africa managed to recover
‘They might have been distracted but there wasn’t much more the officials could have done. They’ve got to deal with that the way they did.’
Springbok captain Siya Kolisi said: ‘There was nothing we could have done. Both teams reacted to the situation.
‘You just see someone getting tackled. I thought it was well taken care of by the stadium staff.’