Cape Town - The already-printed book celebrating the career of veteran Springbok prop Tendai "Beast" Mtawarira has been recalled by the publishers - at the request of the player himself.
Advance copies of Beast (Tendai Mtawarira, with Andy Capostagno, Pan Macmillan) had already given to various media, including Sport24.
But a press statement was issued on Thursday, indicating that the book, in which controversial comments by the player about past Bok coach Peter de Villiers had already been highlighted by some media outlets, was to be "delayed".
It read: "World-renowned rugby player Tendai Mtawarira, co-author Andy Capostagno and publishers Pan Macmillan have decided to delay the launch of Mtawarira’s highly anticipated book.
"The memoir, titled Beast, was set to be released on July 1, but will now be launched later in the year.”
Mtawarira is quoted in the release as saying: "With the reaction of some commentators to a single paragraph from the book as a possible indicator of the level of media attention and interest, we felt it necessary to delay the release of the book, so that I can focus solely on my rugby in preparation for possible inclusion in the World Cup squad.”
The book shares insights into Mtawarira's personal journey, including his relationships with mentors and those who have helped to shape his career as a powerhouse of the South African rugby fraternity.
It added: "A new date for the book's release will be communicated as soon as it has been finalised."
In the book, the Sharks-based veteran said of De Villiers: "He had been a great coach of the Junior Springboks, but I think at the higher level he was probably fortunate that he was handed a really good squad of players … Peter didn't do much; most of the work was done by the players."
Hey guys a lot has been said/insinuated the last few days regarding my soon to be released book.— Tendai Mtawarira (@Beast_TM) June 18, 2019
Here’s a joint statement from myself and my publisher @PanMacmillanSA . Have a good evening pic.twitter.com/iTaHsKbZBD