England prop Ellis Genge has revealed that he received death threats after a video appeared to show the loosehead not clapping during the post-match tunnel following England’s Six Nations defeat at the hands of Wales.

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Wales earned a record 40 – 24 victory over their old rivals in a match filled with controversy. Sadly, drama on the field has spilled over into a lot of ill will on social media.

A video posted on Twitter shows his England teammates clapping Welsh players off the pitch following the final whistle, but the Leicester loosehead appears not to be taking part.

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Owen Farrrell talks to the media after the loss to Wales:

His apparent refusal to clap the Wales players has been interpreted by some Welsh fans and even some former professional players as a slight on his opponents. Inevitably some have sent the Bristolian prop digital hate mail, which according to Genge included ‘death threats’.

Genge addressed the video and why he may not have been clapping:  “Don’t know why I’m not clapping in that tunnel must be deep in thought, utmost respect for the Welsh… as for keyboard warriors sending death threats etc”, accompanied by a video of MMA champion Khabib Nurmagomedov saying ‘send location’.

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At the final whistle, the Leicester prop appeared annoyed by Welsh scrum-half Gareth Davies, who had the final say of the game when he kicked the ball into touch. Given that the tunnel was a few moments later, Genge might not have been in the mood for the traditional clap off. Either way, a pretty innocuous incident by any measure.

Genge’s death threats were just the latest unsavoury aftertaste following the weekend’s rugby. England skipper Owen Farrell received a tirade of abuse, while BBC presenter Sonja McLaughlan was left in tears following the match after her post-match interviews were derided online by a minority of angry fans.

“Toxic, embarrassing, disgraceful, appalling. Just some of the feedback I’ve had,” McLaughlan wrote on Twitter. “Thanks for using @ sign so it’s all hit home. Now imagine getting inundated with abuse for doing your job. In my car crying. Hope you’re happy.”

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It lead to the BBC, the Six Nations and England Rugby to condemn the abuse she suffered. For a sport that prides itself on respect, this weekend feels like a low watermark.

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