Boks take refs woes to SANZAR
Peter de Villiers (Gallo)
Brisbane - The Springboks are taking their complaints to an official level with the South African union asking SANZAR to look into what they clearly feel is a bias against Peter de Villiers' side by the judicial system.
The two match ban on Jean de Villiers for a dangerous tackle on top of Bakkies Botha's nine-week ban for head-butting has raised the anger of the South Africans after a tough two weeks in New Zealand where they lost both Tri-Nations Tests to the All Blacks.
South African Rugby Union boss Oregan Hoskins has instructed the Springboks' representative on the SANZAR legal committee, Judge Lex Mpati, to look into the matter.
"On the judicial side, I have asked Judge Mpati to take it up," Hoskins told the Cape Times
"A number of stakeholders have complained to me about the lack of consistency in the rulings of the judicial officials in rugby.
"I have stressed to Judge Mpati the seriousness of the matter, and he has promised that he will come back to me in writing hopefully by next week.
"I don't want to say too much further, as previously I have spoken about the issue in the media and nothing has been done about it."
Jean de Villiers wasn't penalised for the tackle on Rene Ranger during the Wellington Test by referee Alain Rolland, but was cited afterwards by the Australian citing commissioner Scott Nowland.
The Boks are angry that nothing was done against Ranger for an earlier "no-arms" tackle against their fullback Zane Kirchner.
The world champions were also vocal in their assumption that All Blacks captain Richie McCaw was getting away with too much at the breakdowns, believing he should have been yellow-carded at the Cake Tin.
Coach de Villiers vented his frustration after the match by suggesting he was considering coaching his team to "cheat" on the field after struggling with refereeing inconsistencies over the first six Tests of their latest campaign.
"As a coach, you don't want to coach your team to cheat, but maybe that is something we are going to have to consider," he said.
South African Rugby's manager of referees, Andre Watson, did not want to comment on Rolland's performance in Wellington,
"I looked at the ref, and he made some brilliant decisions and some not-so-good decisions," Watson said.
"I can't say if the Boks got a raw deal from the referee because if I do say that that is the case, then South Africa will love me and the rest of the world will hate me, and if I don't feel that way, it will be the other way around."
The Springboks play the Wallabies in Brisbane on Saturday.