Category: Laws, Rules and Refs

Discussion and articles on Rugby Laws and Referees.

Clamouring For Change

Be careful what you wish for: you might just get it…

The thing rugby fans most often herald as the reason they value rugby over any other team sport is the diversity inherent to the game. It draws on many different types of people to play it, but it also appeals to a wide variety of fans. The game is watched over by different types of official, they are in turn watched over by other officials with varying roles and responsibilities and there is an inherent respect for all involved.

The Men In The Middle

Referees are everywhere. They are in the park. They are in your classroom. They inhabit every boozer and drinking hole that has a TV in the corner. Everyone knows the rules better than the man in the middle.

So during this World Cup there have been some public outpourings of vitriol directed at the real match officials. These men can rarely stand up for themselves and they are in the most exposed situation they could ever imagine. This is the most televised rugby event in history and they are right there in the mix, regularly disappointing one large section of the crowd.

John Beattie Snr Talks About Gouging then I Rant a Bit

Interesting blog post from the big man about life-time bans for eye-gouging:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/johnbeattie/2009/12/the_insanity_of_eye_gouging.html

Some of the comments following his article are enlightening (not to mention some of the stories recounted frightening). It is interesting too how some people (PDV, that loon from Stade) still seem intent on downplaying it or sidelining gouging as an issue – a 24-week ban is anti-French, really? Stade Owner Guazzini should be fined into 2020 by the IRB, till the only pink thing he can afford are those little 2p sugar mice, as should the South Africa coach have been before him.

“”The ERC wanted to make an example of a symbolic player of Stade Francais and of the French team which has never had a disciplinary problem. It’s not normal that a private organisation in Ireland prevents a club employee from working, from playing. It is we who pay him.” says Max. I assume he meant “a French team”. Fair enough Max, if you don’t like it then you can bugger off out of the Heineken Cup too (sorry Hugo, you’d be collateral damage). It’s another example of the French clubs (following what I have just decided to call Tincugate) playing by the rules when it suits them and railing against interference when it doesn’t. We’d miss the French flair for sure, but I’m not sure I would want to be part of a game where people thought that what Dupuy did was okay. Watch this and see if you agree:

One of the BBC commenters suggests 6 months for a first attempt, then a life ban for a second one. Sounds fair to me. Although he was raking rather than gouging by the look of things, Dupuy did it twice in the space of 30 seconds after checking to see if he was being watched. Abhorrent is a good word.