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mark.lucas
06-05-15, 03:05
So here we are in sunny Maryland USA for the State U19 final between two teams that are 1st and 2nd in the league.

Play gets going and is competitive and after 15 minutes the defending Blue No. 10 gets tackled and takes a knock into a post (with protectors). He is pronounced OK.

Five minutes later the same player is tackled by two players and poleaxed - there is outrage from the spectators,. Neither the Referee, the sighted AR or the other AR, me, (unsighted due to the way the play has gone and keeping an eye on some handbagging) saw any foul play. The injury resulted in a precautionary backboard evacuation.

This gave the three of us some time to discuss the matter as well as several coaches / others to vent their spleens. Temperatures were high (28C) and so were some opinions. There was a video but this only showed the start of the tackle which was perfectly legal.

The other AR (American) suggested that we should award a penalty to placate the crowd. I simply asked what the secondary signal would be. If it's relevant, both I and the referee are English.

If had been the referee it would have been a scrum restart to Blue.

Your thoughts ...

Ian_Cook
06-05-15, 03:05
SThe other AR (American) suggested that we should award a penalty to placate the crowd. I simply asked what the secondary signal would be. If it's relevant, both I and the referee are English.

If had been the referee it would have been a scrum restart to Blue.

Your thoughts ...

I know they do things a bit differently in the USA, but I am as sure that you won't find "penalty to placate the crowd" in USA Rugby GMGs as I am sure that SimonSmith will agree!

crossref
06-05-15, 08:05
sometimes you know that the players from both teams are expecting a PK....

TheBFG
06-05-15, 10:05
But like he said PK for what :shrug:

You back yourself into a very tight corner by doing that.

I've played in games where a referee gives a PK or a YC for what was clearly a RC offence and when you ask them what the PK/YC is for they have no answer and now no credibility either!

If you don't see it you can't guess!

crossref
06-05-15, 10:05
on this particular incident I am not clear - - did all three of you miss the incident? That seems very unlucky! Or did the other two see it and think it was OK.

beckett50
06-05-15, 11:05
I spent some time last year refereeing in the San Francisco area, and whilst it is true that - whilst rugby is not the national sport - there is a great following for the game.

I found that the crowds can be a little boisterous - but they're American after all! - but that as long as the Captains and the coaches have confidence in the decision making process of the referee and match officials then everything was hunky dory.

By bowing to crowd pressure you are backing yourself into a corner and start to referee by consent of the crowd, rather than by consent of the players and the playing staff. If there was nothing wrong with the tackle and play was stopped to allow the player to receive treatment then the restart is a scrum with the team in possession at the time having the throw-in.

Dixie
06-05-15, 12:05
You say he was poleaxed - can you be a bit more descriptive of the tackle? Crossref has asked the interesting question. Did two out of three officials see it and conclude it was fine? If so, any PK would be an abandonment by the referee of one of his primary duties:

It is the duty of the referee to apply fairly all the Laws of the Game in every match except when an experimental Law variation has been authorised by the IRB Council.

The club has a responsibility to control its spectators. If it can't do that so that the game can be played under iRB laws as interpreted by US GMG, then you need to abandon the game - not deviate from the applicable laws.

OB..
06-05-15, 13:05
sometimes you know that the players from both teams are expecting a PK....Perhaps the classic example is the fight that breaks out behind you. You may well give cards to various players based on what you actually see, but how can you decide who started it, or whose retaliation justifies reversing it? Players and spectators may well have their own (differing) views, but that does not help.

SimonSmith
06-05-15, 13:05
Oh, FFS.

This boils my piss a bit.

First of all, you really can't penalize someone for something you didn't see. It's wrong on so many different levels

Secondly, suppose Blue want to cite for what they consider to be an act of foul play. They can only do so if the referee missed the alleged act of foul play. By penalizing someone, you have pretty much taken that option away from them. Here's the Black defence:
Ref saw it. He gave a PK
Ref: no I didn't see it.
Black: so why the PK
Referee: to keep the crowd happy.

There are no good outcomes to that suggestion.

What's the ref going to say to the Blue coach or captain when they ask him what that was for...?

I need to stop writing. I'm utterly infuriated by that suggestion. I can tell you that if one of my Virginia refs did that, we would have a serious chat. Without wanting to get anyone in trouble, have you discussed this with Ken, Steve Verna or Brei?

mark.lucas
06-05-15, 13:05
Just to clarify, the referee and leading AR saw the tackle and did not see any offence. It was a heavy tackle by two players on a small No. 10 who had already had one clattering 5 minutes previously. We only looked at a team coach's video as we had 20 minutes of idle time whilst the ambulance arrived.

Yes US sports spectators are incredibly vociferous, trying to influence decisions and most of them have no innate understanding of rugby (you won't believe how many suspensions (coaches / parents / players) there are in American Football - for my son's U14 team there were on average 9 a week in a league with only twelve teams). Indeed, in 10 years of refereeing, 9 in the UK and now 1 in the US, I have only ever had to ask a coach / spectator to go and sit on the naughty step - and yes it was 4 weeks ago in the US - I was surprised that the whole of the touchline didn't turn blue such was the vitriol.

crossref
06-05-15, 14:05
OK well I think everyone would agree that if a referee and AR saw the tackle, then they ignore the crowd and go with their own judgement.

and I don't think you should keep everyone dangling for twenty minutes to let them know that!

I think that as soon as the injury crisis is dealt with, first-aid on pitch etc, I'd have a quick word with both captains to explain that I saw the tackle, it was legal, game stopped for injury and wuld restart with a scrum.

Jacko
06-05-15, 15:05
We only looked at a team coach's video as we had 20 minutes of idle time whilst the ambulance arrived.


I would strongly advise against doing that.

FlipFlop
06-05-15, 15:05
And why view the teams video? Do you do that at every decision?

Jesus - make a decision based on what you saw, and go with it (right or wrong).

Had a decision the other week - player dives and scores try, chaser falls on try scorer, but they were close - no PK even considered. I award try and then behind my back (yes I turned away form the players on the floor) - the try scorer, while still lying on the floor - kicks the chaser in the head. By all accounts (form both sides) - decision should have been an RC, and it would have changed the game. But I didn't see it, so I can't do anything about it. I can't see everything all the time. This is why sanctions need to be a deterrent as well as a punishment. To help stop others trying to get away with it.

Pegleg
06-05-15, 16:05
Agree with the common sense view. You award what you see not what the crowd expect (WANT!!!!!) If I refereed to some crowds expectations there would be 10 red cards in the first half against the away team.

Blackberry
06-05-15, 20:05
All of us in the rugby community accept from day one that we are likely to be the victim of / benefit from referees being unable to get to the truth. We will do our very best, accept in good faith our best endeavours and take pride in your noble acceptance of our decisions. Its one of rugby's great features. End of chat.

What we need to do is to get this message out again.

mark.lucas
06-05-15, 23:05
And why view the teams video? Do you do that at every decision?


Wasn't my call. I didn't actually look at it.

- - - Updated - - -


All of us in the rugby community accept from day one that we are likely to be the victim of / benefit from referees being unable to get to the truth. We will do our very best, accept in good faith our best endeavours and take pride in your noble acceptance of our decisions. Its one of rugby's great features. End of chat.

What we need to do is to get this message out again.

I know here we are preaching to the converted but I may use this thread as an educational tool!

Thanks for everyone's input.

Pegleg
07-05-15, 08:05
Wasn't my call. I didn't actually look at it.

Contradicted by...


We only looked at a team coach's video as we had 20 minutes of idle time whilst the ambulance arrived.


So did you look?