Eben Etzebeth's yellow card

Dickie E


Referees in Australia
Joined
Jan 19, 2007
Messages
14,084
Post Likes
2,118
Current Referee grade:
Level 2
60th minute SA v Argentina. SA box kick and Etzebeth (Green #4) chases.

Blue #6 runs an interference line and Green # 4 pushes him. So far, so good. Unfortunately, due to the push, Blue #6 ends up contacting Blue #14 who has jumped to catch the ball. Blue #14 lands dangerously. Green #4 gets a card.

I find this interesting. Green #4 hasn't committed foul play per se and I wouldn't have thought the push (which wasn't hard) even constitutes reckless or careless play. Blue #6 brought the push on himself by obstructing Green #4.

So I wonder how many degrees of separation a player can have from a dangerous incident and still be held accountable. eg imagine a Red player legally enters a ruck which causes the ruck to move which causes a friendly fire elbow to the nose of the White SH. Is the Red player guilty of foul play?
 

Rich_NL

Rugby Expert
Joined
Apr 13, 2015
Messages
1,621
Post Likes
499
From what I've seen, B6 isn't even the main contact that causes B14 to land dangerously, but only a secondary.

I don't follow the reasoning at all. I suspect the idea of a YC was framed in the MOs' minds, and they picked the nearest green player
 

kudu314

Getting to know the game
Joined
Aug 4, 2015
Messages
27
Post Likes
7
Current Referee grade:
Select Grade
The frustrating part was that the call came from the TMO during a timeout to treat an injured blue player that had nothing to do with the incident. During this extended time off the officials started reviewing this "potential" foul play which never was. The footage is clear that blue 6 bumps into green 14 from the push and blue 14 actually hits blue 9 while in the air and that causes him to tip forward dangerously. There was a contact with blue 6 by blue 14 on the way down but the initial point of contacvt in the air was with blue 9. It was quite clear that the referee and TMO were looking for something to penalize and simply saw something completely different than what the footage actually showed. This seems to happen more and more at Test level where referees simply ignore the patent facts right in front of them and rather "interpret" their way to a call. Similar to the Etzebeth try that was dissalowed. I get the feeling that the current crop of international referees are simply not up to the same standard as players and World Rugby needs to seriously start working on sorting their high performance out. Can you imagine the shitshow next year's World Cup will be if the play offs are dominated by referees?
 

Dickie E


Referees in Australia
Joined
Jan 19, 2007
Messages
14,084
Post Likes
2,118
Current Referee grade:
Level 2
This seems to happen more and more at Test level where referees simply ignore the patent facts right in front of them and rather "interpret" their way to a call. Similar to the Etzebeth try that was dissalowed.
Regarding the disallowed try. I think the ref kind of got it right but kind of got it wrong. Etzebeth clearly took the ball out of the hands of a team mate behind him, but I would have gone with a scrum for forward pass, not a penalty for offside.

Noting too that there was at least one illegal entry by Blue earlier in that maul that should have earned Green a PK.
 

Phil E


Referees in England
Staff member
Joined
Jan 22, 2008
Messages
16,053
Post Likes
2,332
Current Referee grade:
Level 8
I find this interesting. Green #4 hasn't committed foul play per se ........

Law 9 Foul Play

1. When a player and an opponent are running for the ball, neither player may
charge or push the other except shoulder-to-shoulder.

15
Except in a scrum, ruck or maul, a player who is not in possession of the ball
must not hold, push, charge or obstruct an opponent not in possession of the
ball.


The obstruction line is arguable, the push isn't.
 

Stu10


Referees in England
Joined
Mar 10, 2020
Messages
870
Post Likes
468
Current Referee grade:
Level 15 - 11
Here is a clip of the incident:

You could argue the push contravenes law 9.1 and warranted a penalty, but in this specific incident I don't feel the push caused Arg 14 to take a tumble... 14 jumped into a mass of players and was always going to collide with Arg 9 or Arg 6 who had both positioned themselves under the ball. I 100% do not think EE should have been given a card. You could just as well argue that Green 14 collided with Arg 9 thus moving him into the path of Arg 14, but I don't see anything untoward there and they only other option would be for everyone to stand back and allow Arg 14 an uncontested catch :rolleyes:. Should Arg 9 be yellow carded, because I feel he caused the player in the air to tip over.

Regarding the general question, if a players pushes another player into a man in the air and clearly creates a dangerous situation, I do think that a card is a valid option.
 

Jarrod Burton


Referees in Australia
Joined
Jun 19, 2013
Messages
725
Post Likes
208
Current Referee grade:
Level 2
I don't pay any attention to TASAnalytics - they generally can't take their green glasses off long enough to see that SA also infringe. Reverse the roles and they would have been asking for a RC probably.
Here is a clip of the incident:

You could argue the push contravenes law 9.1 and warranted a penalty, but in this specific incident I don't feel the push caused Arg 14 to take a tumble... 14 jumped into a mass of players and was always going to collide with Arg 9 or Arg 6 who had both positioned themselves under the ball. I 100% do not think EE should have been given a card. You could just as well argue that Green 14 collided with Arg 9 thus moving him into the path of Arg 14, but I don't see anything untoward there and they only other option would be for everyone to stand back and allow Arg 14 an uncontested catch :rolleyes:. Should Arg 9 be yellow carded, because I feel he caused the player in the air to tip over.

Regarding the general question, if a players pushes another player into a man in the air and clearly creates a dangerous situation, I do think that a card is a valid option.
EE didn't need to push the blue player, who did probably run an obstruction line, but if international referees actually started calling the first infringement most of the other rubbish would disappear.
 

Stu10


Referees in England
Joined
Mar 10, 2020
Messages
870
Post Likes
468
Current Referee grade:
Level 15 - 11
I don't pay any attention to TASAnalytics - they generally can't take their green glasses off long enough to see that SA also infringe. Reverse the roles and they would have been asking for a RC probably.

EE didn't need to push the blue player, who did probably run an obstruction line, but if international referees actually started calling the first infringement most of the other rubbish would disappear.

I'm certainly not an advocate for TASAnalytics, it was just the first YT video I could find that showed the incident!

Regarding calling the first infringement, was that the obstruction line or the push?

Related, in a Prem game this past week (can't remember which, Round 2 or 3) a defender (let's call him red) was on his feet retreating (but on the wrong side of the breakdown) and got in the way of a player (blue) approaching the tackle/ruck. Blue shoved red out of the way, red fell into another player and kneed him in the head, which is why the incident was reviewed, and the ref clearly said red was obstructing and therefore it was reasonable for blue to push him out the way. Correct decision? Can of worms?
 

Jarrod Burton


Referees in Australia
Joined
Jun 19, 2013
Messages
725
Post Likes
208
Current Referee grade:
Level 2
I'm certainly not an advocate for TASAnalytics, it was just the first YT video I could find that showed the incident!

Regarding calling the first infringement, was that the obstruction line or the push?

Related, in a Prem game this past week (can't remember which, Round 2 or 3) a defender (let's call him red) was on his feet retreating (but on the wrong side of the breakdown) and got in the way of a player (blue) approaching the tackle/ruck. Blue shoved red out of the way, red fell into another player and kneed him in the head, which is why the incident was reviewed, and the ref clearly said red was obstructing and therefore it was reasonable for blue to push him out the way. Correct decision? Can of worms?
Can of worms - if the obstruction action is clearly deliberate I'm less likely to tolerate red, but if red player is making an effort to get away and the blue player shoves them to highlight their offsideness then I'm probably going to ping blue.
 

Stu10


Referees in England
Joined
Mar 10, 2020
Messages
870
Post Likes
468
Current Referee grade:
Level 15 - 11
@Jarrod Burton I agree with you. In the game in question the red player who was shoved then collided with a red player in the ruck, knee on head... the query was whether blue was responsible for the injury... if the decision was yes, I assume it would have warranted a card since it resulted in a head injury... I suppose it is similar to the Etzebeth incident, but the ref went the other way. At the time I wondered if the ref might have penalised the push if he would not have been "forced" to award a card.
 
Top