Paul Roos Robbed Of A Victory At Bloemfontein?

2014-08-23....Interschools rugby match between Grey College A and Paul Roos A played at Grey College in Bloemfontein...Photo Devenish Photography  played at Grey College in Bloemfontein...Photo Devenish Photography

A lot of critique is leveled at Grey College after the final minute victory against Paul Roos Gimnasium this past weekend. Match fixing and other ridiculous claims are made. Never in my life have I heard such stupid and unfounded allegations. 

"Grey College and what it stands for will never be part of anything unsportsmanlike let alone match fixing".

In order to make a decision regarding the final penalty we must first determine what the laws of rugby stipulates.

"After the first of the three penalties, Grey tapped and went right. The siren sounded to signify the end of the match. Then flank Juan Venter was tackled and lost the ball forward into the hands of the Paul Roos left wing, David-Lee Moses, who threw it into touch, believing in excitement, no doubt, that the knock-on had ended the match, but instead the referee penalised Moses for what he called  'cynical play'. Certainly what Moses did was wrong but a prior infringement had occurred. A Grey College player knocked the ball on after which the no 11 of Paul Roos take the ball and purposely throw the ball out of play." - Rugby 365

8.5 More than one infringement

(a) When there is more than one infringement by the same team: 

  • If advantage cannot be played or does not accrue to the second offence, the referee applies the appropriate sanction to the offence which is most advantageous to the non-offending team.
  • If either sanction is for foul play the referee applies the appropriate sanction to the offence which is most advantageous to the non-offending team. The referee may also temporarily suspend, or order off, the offending player.
(b) If advantage is being played following an infringement by one team and then the other team commit an infringement, the referee blows the whistle and applies the sanctions associated with the first infringement. If either infringement is for foul play, the referee applies the appropriate sanction for that offence. The referee may also temporarily suspend, or order off, the offending player.
 
So it is clear Grey College knocked on and then Paul Roos threw the ball out of play. The only instance the referee could award Grey College a penalty is if Paul Roos committed "foul play".
 
DEFINITIONS - Foul play is anything a player does within the playing enclosure that is against the letter and spirit of the Laws of the Game. It includes obstruction, unfair play, repeated infringements, dangerous play and misconduct which is prejudicial to the Game.
 
10.2 Unfair play - (c) Throwing into touch. A player must not intentionally knock, place, push or throw the ball with his arm or hand into touch, touch-in-goal, or over the dead ball line. 

Sanction: Penalty kick on the 15-metre line if the offence is between the 15-metre line and the touchline, or, at the place of infringement if the offence occured elsewhere in the field of play, or, 5 metres from the goal line and at least 15 metres from the touchline if the infringement occured in in-goal.

 

A penalty try must be awarded if the offence prevents a try that would probably otherwise have been scored.

So the referee did award a penalty to Grey College. Decision in order and according to laws.

BUT

In an era where school boy rugby attracts more spectators than a Currie Cup game the schools, especially the host must ask itself some serious questions regarding the appointment of referees for the matches, especially for the 1stXV match.

  1. Do I allow and old boy or anybody that is remotely connected to my school to referee? NO
  2. Do I or the local union appoint a referee that is not capable to referee under such pressure? NO
  3. Who's responsibility is it to make sure steps one and two are adhered to? - The Host

All involved in school boy rugby needs to ensure that the boys only get what they deserve. To lose a game due to a biased or unqualified referee is not giving them what they deserve.