SANZAR rules no Lions try!

March 19, 2014
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imagesSANZAR’s referee manager Lyndon Bray has ruled that the Lions were awarded an illegitimate try in the second half of their Super Rugby clash against the Blues at Ellis Park last weekend.

While attempting to score, Lions centre Deon van Rensburg lost the ball when he was tackled by Blues wing Charles Piutau.

The ball spilled forward into the in-goal area, with Lions fullback Coenie van Wyk falling on the loose ball for the “try”.

South African referee Stuart Berry initially referred the incident to the TMO (Johan Greeff), asking whether Van Rensburg knocked the ball forward or whether it was the Blues player that knocked it out of his hands.

While replays CLEARLY showed Van Rensburg was carrying the ball before losing it in the tackle, staggeringly Berry awarded the try!

SuperSport commentators Hugh Bladen and Joel Stransky were baffled by the decision, with Stransky going on to say “that is not how the laws of the game of rugby union work.”

The Blues, who ended up losing the game 39-36, questioned the decision and asked for SANZAR to provide clarity on the call.

The Blues picked up two points in their defeat (one for scoring four tries or more and one for losing by seven or fewer points). Had the “try” not been awarded, they’d have picked up a full-house of five log points. Whether those three “lost” points come back to haunt the men from Auckland remains to be seen…

Bray on Wednesday cleared the air, saying the WRONG call was made by the officials and that a scrum should have been awarded to the Blues instead.

He wrote the following on the SANZAR website regarding the incident.

“Lions No 13 (Van Rensburg) is carrying the ball and about to attempt to score a try. Blues No 11 (Charles Piutau) effects a tackle and Lions No 13 loses possession as a result.

“While the Blues player does jolt the ball out of his possession, he is not trying to deliberately ‘rip the ball’ out of the player’s possession. The onus is on the ball carrier to maintain possession while being tackled. Therefore, this should have been ruled as a knock on and subsequently, no try,” concluded Bray.

Ironically, Berry and Greeff will again be on duty this coming weekend when the Lions host the Reds at Ellis Park on Saturday (17:05 kick-off).

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7 Comments

  1. avatar Astrill Wessie says:
    March 19th, 2014 at 8:46 am

    Yes Mr Bray but not a sound on the 2 tries scored by the Chiefs that was ruled knocked back by the Stormers time SA rugby also tell the world if our teams get screwed down-under

  2. avatar Jacques(Bunny) says:
    March 19th, 2014 at 11:54 am

    @Astrill Wessie: The problem with refs are that they do not know the law and then they implement it as they feel or think it is suppose to be.

  3. avatar biltongbek says:
    March 19th, 2014 at 12:40 pm

    “While the Blues player does jolt the ball out of his possession, he is not trying to deliberately ‘rip the ball’ out of the player’s possession. The onus is on the ball carrier to maintain possession while being tackled. Therefore, this should have been ruled as a knock on and subsequently, no try,” concluded Bray. ”

    I would like Lyndon Bray to explain the following to me.

    A ballcarrier runs onto you, you hit him front on in the tackle and you knock the ball out of his hand, the trajectory is toward the ball carriers goal line, I recover quickly, run onto the loose ball, pick it up and score a try.

    BUT

    The referee calls me back and awards a scrum to the ball carriers team as it is ruled I have knocked the ball on in my tackle. There was no conscious effort on my part to knock the ball out of his grasp, my aim was to stop the ball carrier.

    This happens just about every weekend, what is the difference?

  4. avatar Timeo says:
    March 19th, 2014 at 12:48 pm

    @Jacques(Bunny):

    I searched through the laws and found nothing that specifically describes this situation.

    Perhaps there are rulings, or perhaps it is just by referee convention and interpretation. The 3 situations were not identical, but they were similar enough for me.

    Also we should note that Mr. Bray is not Sanzar and he does not make the laws. His opinions may be influential in sanzar but are not the last word on any issue.

  5. avatar biltongbek says:
    March 19th, 2014 at 1:16 pm

    I went onto the Sareferees website, after some digging I found this example of a ball being knocked out of the grasp of the ball carrier. There are also a number of them on ripping the ball off a ball carrier, the same law applies.

    It was actually queried by the ARU and here are two links that explains it.

    http://www.sareferees.com/laws/view/2829696/

    http://www.sareferees.com/laws/view/2829841/

    Basically the law says when a ball is ripped or knocked from the grasp of a ball carrier, it IS NOT A KNOCK by the ball carrier, however it can be a knock by the tackler or ripper.

  6. avatar Jacques(Bunny) says:
    March 19th, 2014 at 1:49 pm

    @Timeo: That is our biggest problem with the game today too many rulings like this one is not scripted an left the referees to figure out

  7. avatar mawm-the-ever-hopeful-shark says:
    March 20th, 2014 at 6:57 am

    @ Timeo – “Also we should note that Mr. Bray is not Sanzar and he does not make the laws. His opinions may be influential in sanzar but are not the last word on any issue.”

    Even although he might not be SANZAR it didn’t stop Mr Bray from commenting on several incidents over the weekend….. and in all of them he favoured the NZ side. Seems as if he following on from his compatriot.

    http://www.sanzarrugby.com/superrugby/news/referee-update-lyndon-bray/

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