Nick Mallett told SuperSport management that he did not want to work with Ashwin Willemse long before the latter walked out during a live TV broadcast.
This is revealed in senior advocate Vincent Maleka’s 50-page report on his investigation into the incident on 19 May, which was released to the media on Tuesday.
‘Although I did not interview Mr Willemse I was informed by both Messrs Mallett and [Naas] Botha that Mr Willemse was no pushover, and would strongly defend his views whenever he differed with theirs,’ wrote Maleka.
‘[Mallett] references emails which he addressed to management at SuperSport, wherein he requested that he should not be rotated together with Mr Willemse for live studio broadcast.’
In an email from Mallett to executive producer Scott Seward in October 2016, the former Bok coach says: ‘I really enjoy working with Bobs [Gcobani Bobo] and Xola [Ntshinga], Scott.
‘They are a real pleasure… Xola asks very good questions and Bobs knows enough about rugby to produce interesting clips for discussion.
‘Unlike with the complex Ashwin, there are no agendas.
‘It would be great if Ashwin could be moved… where we don’t have to work together.
‘I think he talks garbage, we irritate the hell out of each other and the working environment is just unpleasant and tense.
‘I am very happy to work with Breyton [Paulse], Shimmy [Hanyani Shimange] or Bobs instead as, unlike with Ashwin, I respect their hard work and rugby opinions.’