He came all the way from Wales to pit his rugby skills against a team named after the fastest cat on the continent.
But hooker Scott Baldwin paid dearly for foolishly trying to pet the king of the beasts as though it were a kitten.
Scott Baldwin and his Osprey team mates visited a game farm ahead of their encounter with the Cheetahs at the Bloemfontein home ground.
He put his hand through the fence to pet a lion and got bitten.
Osprey’s coach Steve Tandy was not amused, describing the encounter as pretty stupid on Scott’s behalf.
There was an incident with a lion, but in fairness it was nothing to do with the lion. He did bite Scott but when you put your hand in a fence where there is a lion, then you will get bitten.
From the sideline, Baldwin could only tweet: Sorry to all Ospreys fans for letting you and the team down by missing the game through the bite.
Should [have] known he wouldn’t be impressed with me stroking his lioness before introducing myself to him first. And for those asking, my hand is on the mend thankfully and should be up and running round soon enough, thanks for your support and concern.”
The Ospreys were mauled 44-25 by the Cheetahs. It was their fourth successive defeat in the European Super Pro 14 series that South African teams are playing in for the first time