England and Chelsea ace Ben Chilwell, 25, slated by animal welfare charities after taking part in a tug of war against a TIGER
- The defender was seen playing tug of war with the tiger at a zoo in the US
- The RSPCA said tug of war ‘should not be marketed for public entertainment’
- Chilwell, who earns £190,000 a week, suffered a knee injury in November
- It comes after West Ham defender Kurt Zouma was fined £250,000 for abusing his cats
Chelsea and England left-back Ben Chilwell has come under fire from animal rights chiefs after footage emerged of him arm wrestling a tiger at a theme park.
The star defender, 25, is currently nursing a knee injury but was captured on social media battling with the tiger which had the meat-covered rope clamped between its jaws.
A source, who shared the video with The Sun, said: “It’s animal abuse. They don’t treat the tiger with respect. It’s just fun for them.
An RSPCA spokesperson announced that the organization did not condone Chilwell’s actions.
“We do not believe this activity promotes respect for these wild animals and should not be marketed for public entertainment,” the statement read.
“Zoos often state that their goal is to educate the public…there are many other ways to do that.”
Chilwell, who earns £190,000 a week at Chelsea, has been out of action since November after suffering a knee injury.
The incident allegedly took place in a park in Florida.
Chelsea declined to comment on the incident, according to The Sun, and declined to speculate whether the reckless tussle might have delayed his recovery.
Chelsea and England left-back Ben Chilwell has been slammed by animal rights chiefs after engaging in a tussle with a tiger at a theme park
The star defender, 25, who is currently nursing a knee injury, was captured on social media battling with the tiger who had the meat-covered rope clamped between its jaws.
Chilwell’s video comes months after West Ham defender and former Chelsea player Kurt Zouma was filmed abusing his cat
Chilwell’s team has yet to respond to request for comment, according to The Sun.
The incident comes months after West Ham United and former Chelsea defender Kurt Zouma were fined £250,000 for abusing his cat.
The footage, which was filmed by Zouma’s brother and widely shared online after it aired, prompted major outcry and calls for the defender to be banned.
His club also announced earlier this week that they would donate a considerable sum to several animal welfare charities following the backlash.
Kurt and Yoan Zouma are now being prosecuted by the RSPCA under the Animal Welfare Act, after the 27-year-old was filmed kicking and slapping one of two cats in company, both of which were taken care of by the RSPCA.
Chilwell, who earns £190,000 a week at Chelsea, has been out of action since November after suffering a knee injury (Chilwell pictured left with Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel right)
A tiger competes in a tug of war contest with visitors in 2012 at a Florida theme park
Pulling teeth: NASCAR racing driver Matt Kenseth tries to hang on during a tug of war filmed in 2012
Chilwell is unlikely to suffer a similar fate as the incident happened at a busy public attraction and does not appear to hurt the tiger in any way.
The tiger was seen tugging at the rope which had been covered in pieces of meat by zookeepers, but did not appear to have been forced into the act.
- It has come to our attention that Ben Chilwell was not at Busch Gardens, as reported in an earlier version of this article.