Wales and Ospreys rugby star Scott Baldwin was forced to miss a match in South Africa after being bitten by a lion when he petted the predator at a safari park in Bloemfontein.
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The hooker was branded "pretty stupid" by his Ospreys coach Steve Tandy after the incident and left needing stitches.
Baldwin was visiting the Weltevrede Game Lodge on Wednesday before a match against the Cheetahs.
According to the BBC, Tandy told reporters: "It was pretty stupid on Scott's behalf and he is pretty lucky.
"It had nothing to do with where we were.
"It was a good environment and we were told how far back to stand.
"I don't know what sort of wildlife show Scott has been watching where you can pat a lion on the head as if it's a kitten.
"It's probably one of the silliest things I've even been involved in, but thankfully he is OK and hopefully he will be back up and running in the next couple of weeks."
One said: "Sorry boss, I can't face the Cheetahs tonight, a lion bit me."
Another wrote: "Wow! Lucky to get away with his arm."