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Crusaders star sent home address to troll who threatened him

By Ian Cameron
Johnny McNicholl of the Crusaders is talking to a colleague during the round ten Super Rugby match between the Crusaders and the Melbourne Rebels at Apollo Projects Stadium in Christchurch, New Zealand, on April 26, 2024. (Photo by Sanka Vidanagama/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Former Wales rugby international and current Crusaders star Johnny McNicholl confronted an abusive fan who threatened to “knock him out” by calling his bluff on social media.

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The New Zealand-born back three player received social media messages criticizing his eligibility to represent Wales – culminating in one threatening violence.

In response – the 33-year-old who is now back playing for the struggling franchise in Super Rugby Pacific – shared his home address with the individual and invited him to follow through with the threat.

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McNicholl moved to Llanelli in 2016 and became eligible to play for Wales through residency, earning his first of 10 caps in 2020. He found himself having to defend his right to play for Wales, ultimately taking action against one abusive troll online.

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“I got a little bit of banter from the boys,” McNicholl told the What a Lad podcast podcast. ‘But that still exists to this day. But the brutal side of it was more so the fans, and the media. I did feel like a Welsh rugby player at that time of my career, I wasn’t Welsh but I felt like a Welsh player.

“I did cop a bit of heat, I had a few bad direct messages. The worst one was ‘Mate, if I see you in the street I’m going to knock you out because you’re not Welsh. He was directly messaging me saying that. I messaged him back saying ‘Flat 3, Aberdare House. Come knock on my door.’

“I’ve not got a good fight in me at all, but I was fuming. I was like, this guy is pissing me off. I went to sleep and he obviously didn’t come knock on my door. I woke up and blocked him and that was the first and last time I responded to anyone on social media.”

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McNicholl began his rugby career in New Zealand, playing as a versatile back for Canterbury in the ITM Cup. He also represented the Crusaders in Super Rugby.

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Comments

2 Comments
J
John 72 days ago

Online trolls - the only ppl who the Crusaders can beat

M
Max 73 days ago

Doxed himself. Great work Johnny. You are well suited to the Saders

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