Monday, 12 September 2011


There are some that say that English ref Wayne Barnes cost Wales a famous win over the Springboks on Sunday, by failing to refer James Hook's 14th minute penalty miss to the TMO.

Delusional nonsense of course.

I've watched the TV replay several times now and the only conclusion I can reach is that it's inconclusive. The ball does appear to swing inwards at the last moment but there's no way of telling exactly when or exactly where. The people with the best view, unsurprisingly, were the 2 touch judges.

Notwithstanding the fact that the kick was in the 14th minute (had it gone over, Wales would still have been behind with 66 minutes remaining), the controversy also hides the fact that it was a relatively simple kick. Hook should really have banged it straight through the middle. He didn't do so. He botched it, along with another reasonably straightforward kick at the end of the match that would have sealed victory.

Harsh but fair.

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