Indigenous TV star Brooke Boney has spoken out on the Today Show in support of Latrell Mitchell after the Rabbitohs star was racially insulted during their defeat to the Panthers.
As the rifle fullback left the pitch during half time of South Sydney’s defeat to Penrith at BlueBet Stadium, a fan reportedly wearing a Roosters jersey was heard racially abusing the footy star.
He was said to have been quickly removed from the BlueBet stadium, while the police and NRL launched an investigation.
In the wake of the Panthers’ 16-10 win, Boney spoke out against racism in footy.
“As the only Indigenous person here I just want to jump in and I want to say that racism in sports, racism has to stop everywhere.
‘Being able to go to work and do your job, everyone should be able to do that.
Native TV star Brooke Boney has spoken out on the Today Show in support of Latrell Mitchell
“I mean, Latrell Mitchell is a big kid, he can take care of himself, but no one should go to work and be mistreated. That’s disgusting.
“We’ve seen it happen before in the AFL. We’ve seen it happen in other codes and I don’t know what goes through people’s minds. I know this man was a kid, but you should know better. These kids learn from something.
The thing is, it’s not just Latrell who goes on the field. It’s kids at home watching this as we report it. It is children who see reactions on Facebook when the clip is posted. It’s disgusting and it has to stop. It makes people sick,” she said.
It comes after her co-host Alex Cullen called the incident an isolated incident and called out the racist fan.
“I was at that game. I was about four or five bays to the left of where that happened. I have not seen this incident. This is an isolated incident. I’m in Penrith all the time. They’re a great crowd, they’re a great community. But what this person did there is unforgivable,” he said.
Fans have taken to social media to echo Boney’s thoughts.
“There must be an end to racism in rugby league,” one fan wrote. “Life bans should be given to all members of the public who make racist comments.
NRL fans have supported Latrell Mitchell after he was racially abused
The Rabbitohs star and his teammates heard the slur as they came off the field at half time
Latrell Mitchell inspires Native children and is a modern legend of the game. Shouldn’t be tolerated at all.’
Another said: “You can hate Latrell Mitchell as much as you like, but racially insulting him at a football game is beyond disgraceful.”
“Whoever racially insulted Latrell Mitchell should get a lifetime ban,” said a third fan. “It’s 2023 and this is still happening.”
Meanwhile, another said: ‘It’s disgraceful that Latrell Mitchell is being racially abused in Penrith by an idiot in a Roosters jersey. Jail the idiot for life or suspend him.’
After the match, an angry Jason Demetriou was furious at the appalling state of affairs that brought shame to the NRL and called on the league bosses to act decisively.
‘It happened. It is not the first time that we have come here as a club and our players have been treated racist,” he said.
‘Where does it end? It’s just not on. It should not be allowed to come here as a coach and racially insult our players.
Fans have taken to Twitter to support the South Sydney superstar after their Round 2 match
“It’s not what our game is about and we need to eradicate it completely. NRL clubs need to get rid of it, lifetime bans, anyone wanting racial abuse needs to get out of the game, we don’t want their support. It must end.’
When asked about Mitchell’s well-being, Demetriou said, “He’s tired of it. Why wouldn’t he be? He shouldn’t come here as a star of our game and be racially abused.
‘Who cares what color he is? It’s not on. I don’t even understand how that happens in our time.
“I don’t understand why a young child thinks this is the language he should use. I don’t care what sweater he wears. Take it out of our game.’