We lost the trophy, but in my eyes, we were as good as the winners. The AB deserved the win though yesterday, as our kicking, conversions, by Morne Steyn were ‘off’ and that affected our end result. With so much pressure, who knows.
We scored 4 tries ( repetitive of 2004 against the AB), and almost matched their 5th try, but the player, Willie Le Roux’s foot unfortunately touched the side- line as he went down and ‘scored’. For a score to reach 15 or more in a rugby final, is amazing, but for a final to record a total of almost 10 tries, is titanic.
More importantly, if every game is refereed fairly, one team will not have an unfair advantage over the other. If I recall, we had that Bryce Lawrence obliterating the game for one side, us. A final should be just that, a final, and the point system relatively new, should not influence a final to pile on pressure and or if a referee is blatantly biased and a few deliberate cheats 2mt from a try line are overlooked on purpose in the tournament, then the points are pointless. An AB player who were not listed to play yesterday were sneaked onto the field and our super-gentleman as always captain, Jean de Villiers, said to the referee, “lets just play on”. If that is how trophies must be won.... I say no comment.
When a game is ruined for one side, an apology is pointless, because it all adds up to the finals in the tournament.
It was strange seeing the referee go down in this game when he pulled a hamstring, , but he was fair. It must have been tough to keep up. Since 1997 the AB have lost 10 out of 13 matches on Ellis Park with a crowd of 65 000. ( y’day in error I typed Loftus situated in Pretoria)
True professional sportsmen, as in any sport, must play sport in the spirit of enjoyment and good sportsmanship.
The All Blacks are a good competitive rugby side, there should be no place for incompetent and biased referees, as it leaves one in doubt as to who the real champs are.
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