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Sunday Times STLive By ANDRIQUES CHÉ PETERSEN, 2012-08-26

Ex-Bok and his wife in fishy crash

Dramatic video footage shows rugby player Earl Rose staggering topless from a fish and chips take-away that was demolished by his car in a bizarre crash.

The 28-year-old former Springbok fullback and his wife, Amor, are facing charges of reckless and negligent driving after ploughing into the front counter of the popular eatery in Gordon's Bay.

Ooskus Fisheries, which has served fresh calamari and other seafood delights in the coastal town for nearly 40 years, exploded in a cloud of concrete and dust shortly after 3am last Sunday.

CCTV cameras inside and outside the store captured the dark BMW 1 series approaching, flatten two poles on the pavement and then ram through the front of the store.

Although police were at the scene within minutes, Raymond Goldberg, owner of Ooskus Fisheries, said no blood or alcohol tests were conducted on the car's occupants.

"The police told me that they can't draw blood because they don't know who the driver was, and the people in the car were being evasive about who the actual driver is," he said.

Amor initially agreed to speak to the Sunday Times but was then unavailable.

When the Sunday Times tried to speak to Enver Rose, the player's father, on Friday, he said: "I wasn't involved in any accident, so I don't have anything to say to you."

Earl Rose was in the vehicle with his wife and a third occupant. Video footage showed that Amor was the first to clamber out of the vehicle.

Rose took some time to emerge, with help from a bystander, and crawled onto what appears to be a table.

Witnesses said the couple were allegedly involved in an altercation at a night club before the crash.

Employee Johan Thiart, one of the first on the scene, said: "I was lying in bed, then I heard a vehicle coming down the road. I was thinking 'that person driving isn't slacking at all', and as I thought that, I heard the crash. Immediately I jumped up and ran out."

He found a shocked Amor in the street. "When I got there, [his wife] was already standing outside; he was still in the car. He was busy screaming and shouting at her. Then I rushed home to call my boss."

Thiart said Rose's wife left the scene a few minutes after the crash. "When I went back ... the wife was gone, he [Rose] was just sitting around here," said Thiart, standing outside the remains of the building.

The video footage shows that Amor left the scene as local security response teams, followed by police, arrived at the crash site.

Western Cape police spokesman Warrant Officer November Filander said the alleged driver, Amor, was not present at the scene. A "case docket of reckless and negligent driving has been opened and is being investigated", he said.

Goldberg said: "Our main priority now is to get the shop up and running again."

Goldberg has owned the famous fish and chips shop for the last four years. "We have a rough estimate now from the builder, of about R160000 to repair the building, but that excludes the equipment we'll have to get."

He is now running his take-away business from his home.

"We definitely lost business, because we were closed for a few days. People are unsure about whether we're open or not.

"It's hampered our everyday working process, it took out the heart of the shop," he said.