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Nic Dlamini (NTT) is recovering from surgery and is getting legal advice from a prestigious law firm after park rangers in South Africa broke his arm in an altercation last week.
“I will be represented by the international law firm Norton Rose Fulbright following this terrible incident,” the 24-year-old South African said in a statement on his Facebook page. “Norton Rose Fulbright have enormous experience in dealing with contentious issues such as this and are currently dealing with Caster Semenya’s case against the IAAF.”
Dlamini, who has been a WorldTour pro since joining Dimension Data in 2018, was injured on Friday while riding in the Silvermine area of Table Mountain National Park near Cape Town. According to SANParks, which governs national parks in South Africa, rangers tried to stop him for riding in the park without having paid a fee or acquired a permit.
Cape Town cyclist Donovan Le Cok, who was riding nearby, told CyclingTips that the rangers grabbed Dlamini’s bicycle by the handlebars and caused him to crash. The situation escalated from there. A ranger pushed Dlamini up against a van and twisted his arm to the point of breaking it, a scene that Le Cok caught on video.
SANParks says the rangers have been suspended. The severity of Dlamini’s required him to undergo surgery.
“For now, I need to receive expert care and physio at hospital or rest at home until I’m well enough to leave and make a statement to the police,” Dlamini wrote. “I am not sure yet when this will be, but for now things are a little uncomfortable and I am still coming to terms with what happened.”
The timetable for his return to training remains unclear at this point.
“I am overwhelmed by the support offered by everyone at home and around the world, especially from the world of cycling,” Dlamini wrote. “This has been an extremely upsetting experience and your support means a lot to me.”
Dlamini also noted that he “cannot give any more detail to anyone at this stage” as he consults with his legal team on possible next steps.