Super Rugby Final - the 'contentious' try

Crucial

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Not really surprised that there is little discussion here on this as to my eye it would have been very parsimonious of the TMO not to have awarded this on the balance of probabilities.

What I do find interesting is the possibility of a PT due to the defender attempting to kick the ball out of the BC's hand. It was also my initial instinct on first replay but I discounted it as it was only an attempt and he didn't manage to commit the foul. This is what Kaplan says about the situation...

Let’s discuss the latter because it is quite interesting.


Dixon busts up through a few would be tacklers and is lunging for the line. As he attempts to ground the ball, Milner-Skudder appears from from his left and attempts to kick the ball as he is grounding it. He misses. Dixon grounds the ball mostly on Milner-Skudders leg, and the ground. Remember, all it has to touch is 1 blade of grass for the try to be given. If the ball has not left Dixons hand by the time it touches 1 blade of grass, it’s a try! Furthermore, he does not need to be in control of the ball. All he needs to look at is that there is no separation. The TMO is tasked with this very difficult decision.


In my professional opinion, I would say that the ball had to have touched at least 1 blade of grass before Dixon let go of the ball. Therefore I believe the decision by the TMO was accurate.


Furthermore, if you can categorically say that it never touched the ground, then I have an extremely compelling argument that a penalty try would then have been awarded! It clearly states in law that you may not kick the ball out of the hands of a player attempting to score a try. This is exactly what Milner-Skudder attempted to do, and as a direct result of that act, his trailing leg became the only point of conjecture as to whether a try was scored. Since we cannot separate pieces of a players anatomy from their bodies, we must regard this leg as part of the illegal act, and hence a penalty try would have been given.


The score came at a crucial time in the game, just before halftime, and as often happens in these low scoring affairs, those moments are critical!


The fact that the penalty try was not mentioned on any of the networks is once again a sad indictment of the quality of experts in this field that they do not possess. It would have been a magic talking point, and would have gone a long way towards allaying fears from the Canes faithful that they had been hard done by.

Here is the action

 

Ian_Cook


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Pretty much try all day long as far as I am concerned


I thought Jaco was excellent in this match. He let the game flow with a minimum "at the time" management, and plenty of pre-emptive talk during breaks in the play, keeping players mindful of their responsibilities. In fact, you hardly knew he was there.
 
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Crucial

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What is your view on the PT scenario though Ian?

Defenders trying to kick the ball out of the carrier's hands or sliding in with the legs/knees is a pet hate of mine and I get really grumpy when I see it is an act that is generally ignored by refs and TMOs. If the try is awarded everyone just carries on and you rarely see/hear the ref warn the defender about it.

I think Kaplan is stretching things a bit with his case in this instance, the attempted kick missed (bit like a punch thrown that doesn't connect) and the leg on the ground that gets in the way could well have been there even if the kick wasn't attempted. I think it would have caused a bigger shitstorm if a PT was awarded.
 

damo


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Hi Crucial

I thought about the PT issue at the time as well, but ultimately I am not convinced that it was an attempt to kick the ball out of the guys hands. On slow-mo it looks like a kick, but this could be misleading because in real time, the motion it doesn't look much different to the player just losing his feet in the tackle. Even if it was an attempted kick, it was the other leg that ended up underneath the ball, and his attempted kick was immaterial. The other leg would likely have fallen there in any case. I don't think it was clear and obvious enough for a PT. Interested in others views.

I would like to see this ruled on when players go feet first "studs up" into goal line tackles though, where the player doing the kicking is not a part of the tackle prior to the line.
 

Ian_Cook


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What is your view on the PT scenario though Ian?

Defenders trying to kick the ball out of the carrier's hands or sliding in with the legs/knees is a pet hate of mine and I get really grumpy when I see it is an act that is generally ignored by refs and TMOs. If the try is awarded everyone just carries on and you rarely see/hear the ref warn the defender about it.

I think Kaplan is stretching things a bit with his case in this instance, the attempted kick missed (bit like a punch thrown that doesn't connect) and the leg on the ground that gets in the way could well have been there even if the kick wasn't attempted. I think it would have caused a bigger shitstorm if a PT was awarded.


I think he's stretching it, but not very far.

If the kick out prevented that try from being awarded, say by clearly dislodging the ball out of Dixon's hand so that it was nowhere near being grounded, then surely PT is a fair result, after all, in that circumstance, its a case of "punch connected".

I don't believe NMS' actions were accidental, I think he knew what he was trying to do.
 

Dickie E


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If either ref or TMO were thinking PT if the try hadn't been scored, then it should have been a YC regardless.
 
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