Henry suspected match fixing

2012-07-29 09:40

Auckland - A biography of former All Black coach Graham Henry reveals he suspected match-fixing after his team's shock loss to France in the quarter-finals of the 2007 World Cup and urged the New Zealand Rugby Union to press for an international inquiry.

In Graham Henry: Final Word, due to be published this week, biographer Bob Howitt says Henry briefly considered match-fixing as the only explanation for the All Blacks' 20-18 defeat.

Henry says when he analysed the match he found English referee Wayne Barnes had awarded New Zealand only two penalties, although he counted more than 40 potential offences committed by France. France were also awarded a try from a forward pass.

Henry says he found it "incomprehensible" that rugby had no procedures in place to investigate "bizarre" results in major matches.

"He knew if a comparable situation had occurred in other sports, it would be investigated," Howitt writes. "But there existed a blissful purity about rugby, or at least that's how everyone wanted to perceive it. It wasn't politically correct to even suggest the match officials might have favoured one team."

Henry has frequently answered questions about the 2007 quarter-final, which almost cost him his job as All Blacks coach. But he had never previously revealed his suspicions about match-fixing.

Howitt says Henry, who went on to lead New Zealand to victory at the 2011 World Cup, was so shocked at what he found when he analysed the 2007 match that he became physically sick.

Henry studied video of the match that provided three different angles and offered statistical breakdowns of lineouts, scrums, penalties, tackle counts, territory and possession.

He found the All Blacks had an overwhelming 73 per cent territorial advantage, won 166 rucks to 42 and made only 73 tackles in comparison to France's 331.

Yet, New Zealand did not receive a single penalty in the last 50 minutes of the match. Henry says his final analysis suggested Barnes missed 40 penalty infringements by France and that if New Zealand had been awarded the most obvious of those penalties, the final score could have been 42-3 or 42-6.

The All Blacks coach took his concerns to the New Zealand Rugby Union.

"He told them he believed, given the graphic video evidence available, that the NZRU should pressure the International Rugby Board to institute an inquiry," Howitt writes. "He also emphasised that it was incomprehensible that the IRB did not have strategies in place to investigate bizarre matches. And when it came to bizarre, this World Cup quarter-final was an absolute doozy.

"As far as Graham was concerned, the major reason the All Blacks had lost was not because of conditioning or rotation policies or decisions by his captain, but purely and simply because the officials had refereed only one team, to a degree unprecedented in the history of the sport."


  • luke.hahn.7 - 2012-07-29 09:50

    Well I suspected match fixing in the 2011 final by Craig Joubert

      nzbro.allblack - 2012-07-29 10:27

      Well said Sir Graham...! and about time too.Now lets put that one to rest. Cant do anything about it now except learn.

      nzbro.allblack - 2012-07-29 10:36

      luke.hahn.7 thats NOTa fair comment against your own ref who is highly respected by sanzar too. I think craig is one of the best refs on the field and win or lose I never question his integrity.

      skinfaxi.mordor - 2012-07-29 11:03

      I don't think it was match fixing but CJ was clearly intimidated and scared to ping the Kiwis for blatant infringements. Why did he stop play when the AB players went down but allowed play to go on when the French players were receiving attention? The French should have won that game by at least 9 points.

      pierre.devilliers.9231 - 2012-07-29 12:37

      Yes we all suspected match fixing in 2011, but we were not allowed to say it and were accused of bad sportsmanship. However NZ are allowed to make accusations every time they lose, from food-poisoning to referees. In 2011 WC the NZ media were all over Wayne Barnes to discredit him for 2007.

      thomas.cannon.712 - 2012-07-29 23:16

      Match Fixing Henry!! Who do you suspect, the ref??? The French, though I cant see how a team on their own can fix to win a game!!! Just maybe you had some traitors in your own camp???? I think you just saw how easy it was to fix a tournement with some slimey senior refs and officials that won you the Cup,and said maybe that happened to us in 2007!!!! The last eight minutes with 90% of the possesion in the French "22" and couldn't think of a drop goal!!!! Your brains needed fixing!!!!!!

  • Pieter Jansen Van Rensburg - 2012-07-29 09:50

    Bryce Lawrence = match fixing

      nzbro.allblack - 2012-07-29 10:39

      BL was highly offended by these types of comments because he does not believe he made deliberate errors.He admits he may have missed offences and failed to blow on it but he does not accept being called a cheat according to a local article here. I think that perhaps BL is just incompetent and past his sell by date. His exit is welcomed by many on both sides.

      nzbro.allblack - 2012-07-29 11:20

      blueraven.debullsfan I cannot explain that decision at all Im afraid. That was a surprise for me too. NZRU did not ask the fans to vote.

  • leon.leroux - 2012-07-29 09:54

    Typical NZ view - they lose they cry foul, they win they say they deserved the win. But that said, Fixing is rife in sport why not rugby?

      Flemjob - 2012-07-29 18:07

      Ahem, have you read the comments on here from Bok supporters Leon? NZ has every reason to cry foul. They're the best team in the world. The Boks are far from it.

  • jay187 - 2012-07-29 10:14

    I suspected something dodgy in '95 too.. especially seeing ABs throwing up on the sidelines during the game...

      cape.maori - 2012-07-29 10:17

      Agree!! The saffas are masterd at match fixing aka Hansie Cronje, the Afrikaner seun!!

      nzbro.allblack - 2012-07-29 10:31

      Good one there Jay. Hard to say who was behind that one too. Was it match fixing or politics at play?.after all that RWC event united your country in political favour....but lets not go there now aye...its over too.

      press.enter.12 - 2012-07-29 11:11

      But you have to admit the NZlanders were the only ones to award their matchfixer in the main with the title of NZland referee of the year . . . . . . .

      hendrik.schutte.3152 - 2012-07-29 16:19

      the AB's were scared and nervous that's why.

      caryn.dawson - 2012-07-29 19:02

      Wow @ cape.maori, talk about selective memory with regards to match fixing in cricket - I seem to remember that Shane Warne & the Waugh Brothers were all found to be involved with providing information to bookies but were basically rapped over the knuckles and told what naughty boys they were - and quite frankly if the 94 All blacks were convinced they were poisoned then why not have a blood test taken to confirm those suspicions? Surely in this era of modern science the proof would have been easy to find? Could Have - Should Have - Would Have - Buddy if my food doesn't taste right I stop eating it...

  • sean.tearnan - 2012-07-29 10:22

    Yet the NZ got Bryce Lawrence to do SA in @ 2011 WC cause the Boks would have KLAPPED the kiwis. This ref has now been declared incompetent by the IRB however he was the KIWI ref of the year. GH u a Ass

      wesley.j.lane - 2012-07-29 10:59

      Well said! everyone know we would of won. Thanks to that prick BL!

      troy.kimpton.5 - 2012-07-29 12:17

      you would have lost that game too..deluded

      mardeo.bezuidenhout - 2012-07-29 13:38

      You do now that it was that same incompetent BL that f8kcd up the Australia vs Ireland game sending us 2 meet aus in a quarter rather than a potential semi. Bryce is just useless. As for the findings in the book, the stats dont lie. It sounds rather one-sided to me.

  • Jayson Wolhuter - 2012-07-29 10:41

    He had 4 years to plan his own match fixing! How dare they come up with this after Bryce. Bryce & Co you took the All Blacks from most respected to most hated! Henry, you are a hypocrite!

      gsaker1 - 2012-07-29 14:11

      some of the worst match fixers were the South African back b4 they got banned - they were the only country to refuse neutral ref - gee I wonder why...and every team that played them at home complained about the blatant bias of their refs - go read books written by X Lions players not just Kiwi's and other about the international joke SA refs became...most of u idiots weren't around then tho huh?

  • calvin.cona - 2012-07-29 10:46

    So-Called sir investigate your own officials then we can look further why after 5years stupid ass so-called champs that trophy was given to you last year

      nzbro.allblack - 2012-07-29 11:10

      err calvin.cona we can say the very same thing about the 95 rwc. I was at the field at the time and saw some very strange things going on with all the AB players feeling sick at the same time.Even saw some throwing up on the sidelines. Where were you then aye? Too busy celebrating a trophy that was given to you too?

      caleb.drumm.1 - 2012-07-29 11:32

      Nail on the head there NZ Bro, these Saffas quite quickly forgetthere own history. They also quite quickly forget how crooked the refs were back in the amateur days, so hat noone could win a test series in SA because they refused neutral refs!!! But lets just quickly sweep that under the rug. The only thing that matters is that All Blacks are the Rugby World Cup Champions, end of story. The differece is, in 2011 world cup quarter final, SA were awarded penalties, they were too crap and old to convert them into points.

      nzbro.allblack - 2012-07-29 11:42

      caleb.drumm.1 - wow now you're bringing back some bad memories from the amateur days of the SA refs. That was just awful to witness too and made us pull our hair out over here lol. It was a miracle then when the AB did win with the ref 's interference in favour of the well we can laugh about it now aye. Good one ! I wonder where many of the current bok supporters on this forum was then. probably many not born yet ? lol...I enjoyed that memory,

      Oom Kosie - 2012-07-29 18:28

      Off course you are right, who can forget Clive Norling!

      deon.meyer.752 - 2012-07-30 08:41

      No nzbro I think it was still the hangover they had from the England game I think after Lomu walked all over the English they went out to celebrated the rest of the week as they were supposed to walk the final. LOL

  • Sonnyjakes - 2012-07-29 11:01

    Where money comes in the possibilities will alwyas be there. @Cape Maori, it is easier for a ref or umpire to swing a match than 2 or 3 players. I was a cricket umpire for 10 yrs and we were always taught/told that. Hansie might have played his little spread bet games on the field but he cost us more in his interference in team selections and being to clever. The problem with refs and umpires they have to much exposure and they tend to be officious like uncle Paddy and others. Frik du Preez once said after a game that they lost with such an official that it was the best ref he had ever played against, so it did not start today. In other words they are hogging the limelite. They have become more important or bigger than the players or game. Golf the only game where you play against yourself?

      nzbro.allblack - 2012-07-29 11:06

      very good & constructive contribution Sonnyjakes . well said

  • glen.martinus - 2012-07-29 11:16

    uhm Sir you mean 2011 Springboks vs Ausies???

  • john.latilla - 2012-07-29 11:20

    And then it happened again! Courtesy of we all know who! And the Kiwis told us to "suck it up mate"!

      nzbro.allblack - 2012-07-29 11:26

      lol yes that is true john , after all we had it happen to us twice in a row so were more experienced at dealing with such bad practice to therefore able to provide qualified advice to you on how best to deal with Did it work for you too?

      nzbro.allblack - 2012-07-29 11:30

      Today I can calmly say to you all to not dwell on this type of events too long and just move on. It will make no difference at all what we say about it now. Its almost 9.30pm and Im off to bed now. chat to you lot tomorrow on a better topic. N24 ! please change the subject. you're bringing up old arguments that will never be sorted.

  • roy.wadhams.1 - 2012-07-29 12:06

    Imagine how South Africa felt when we lost because of Bryce Lawrence,a New Zealander,in the Super 15,against the Australians. I see no point in bringing your loss up against the French now,or are you hoping for good book sales?

  • mbulelo.pikoli - 2012-07-29 12:38

    I dnt think south africans will buy yo book what about yo countryman Bryce Lawrence who cost the mighty BOKS

  • hayden.wedel - 2012-07-29 14:56

    The entire world suspected match fixing when the Aussies won the Boks WC 2012 for it conveniently favoured the All Blacks to win the WC!

      tom.tardis - 2012-07-29 15:38

      aussies BEAT the boks in the RWC 2011 idiot - 2012-07-29 17:52

      Hey Hayden, don't worry about this putz, we all know what you meant.

  • hendrik.schutte.3152 - 2012-07-29 16:04

    Ahh shame for Henry. He was strangely mumm about the atrocities of Bryce Lawrence in last years game between Boks and Wallabies. Go play in a volcano somewhere Graham.

  • Hotspotsman - 2012-07-29 16:40

    Springboks had to be bundled out of W.C. 2011. How Many supporters would have been left in NZ, if SA beat both Australia & NZ in Quarter & Semi Finals ?. Who would they have beaten in the final if allowed to continue. ?. "Professional" Sport. Money Talks.

  • - 2012-07-29 16:42

    But no comment from this pushead on blatant match fixing by NZ rugby in conjunction with lice lawrence in 2011 world cup. No wonder he (lice) was voted best ref by NZ rugby. And no one said a word.

  • keithronald.wildschut - 2012-07-29 20:11

    Mr.Henry you can say these things now after your cup has been insured by match riggig in the game between Australia and SA. You will not care to request to investigate the refereeing of your countryman.So please keep your mouth shut.

      KLSmith51 - 2012-07-29 20:51

      It is easy to bet on rugby. JUST LOOK WHO TAKES THE WHISTLE and it is a safe bet. So all countries and Provinces are scared.The IRB selection board for refs are to blame for this. They are messing up the game. Bring back the hands in rugs and take away the illegal scumming rules this is a mans game. Let the front row sort itself out.

  • Theo Ferreira - 2012-07-29 21:23

    We have a lot to learn from NFL, who use seven (7!!) officials on the field. 1 on each team's side at set pieces and active involvement from the 2 linesmen, while another three are waiting in the end zone. Rugby could use more interaction from the linesmen who should call scrum penalties from the loose head side at all times for starters and be more obvious and overt in their interaction throughout the game, not just on tip tackles and line out calls when summoned by the referee. Each coach should get one or two penalty flags/objections to use per game where the ruling is reviewed by the TV referee and the referee COMBINED i.e. give the damn ref a tv screen on the sideline to use. This way when something is "missed" there is an opportunity to stop, review and prevent situations where a game goes one way or the other "if only it wasn't for that high tackle that wasn't called" or "that fwd pass that ended in a try". This nonsense of having the TV umpire's decision impacted by the semantics of the referee's question is ridiculous and counterproductive.

  • ann.erasmus - 2012-07-30 00:04

    Sounds very similar to Bryce lawrence's (of New Zealand) handling of the Aus vs RSA game at last world cup. So nothing has changed.

  • viva.lebok - 2012-07-30 00:12

    I suspect match fixing the the 1/4 final by Bryce Lawrence and in the final. by Craig Joubert, but I don't see Graham Henry making refernce to that in his autobiography.

      leigh.mapu - 2012-07-30 00:34

      Wow are you psychic, the book hasn't been released yet?

  • an.a.969 - 2012-07-30 00:23

    Nah f@ck...blame the maid...she 'cooked' the food!

  • leigh.mapu - 2012-07-30 00:39

    You South Africans are missing the point: had a system been put in place, as suggested by Henry, then the Aus vs. SA QF could have been investigated. But no, you would rather bitch because a team won the world cup under contentious circumstances (which has been the case since 1995).

  • robert.elkins.146 - 2012-07-30 01:01

    as Beverly explained I'm dazzled that anyone able to earn $7160 in one month on the computer. have you seen this web page

  • chris.hadfield2 - 2012-07-30 06:53

    Thats funny - I suspected a fantastic comeback from another unpredictable French side who once again made the all blacks their bunnys at a RWC...

  • dustin.dewet - 2012-07-30 09:02

    What a comlete D__S! Everytime they don't win a WC they have some sort of conspiracy theory why they did'nt win. Rather explain to the SA rugby supporters how B Lawrence was awarded NZ referee of the year in 2011? The NZ coaching staff knew they would never be able to beat the Bokke in a semi or final, the only way to ensure they stood a chance was to eliminate them in some other way. I don't care who says what, NZ administrators and B Lawrence made sure we did not win that quarter final.

  • albert.maritz - 2012-07-30 10:16

    Watching the quarter final SA vs Aus in 2011 will also have him physically sick. It is refreshing that these are reviewed and steps taken.

  • chris.delport.10 - 2012-07-30 11:20

    I find it very strange that Graeme Henry complains about that result, but nothing about the way the semi-final against the Aussies was officiated. The All Blacks went on to win the World Cup as their biggest rivals were cheated out of the tournament. Bryce Lawrence did apologise afterwards, but for what? cheating? He was rewarded for his efforts and was voted as NZ's referee of the year, but has since being booted off the IRB panel.

      cape.maori - 2012-07-30 11:31

      @Chris: Please explain to me how the bokkies / proteas (days of the bok are numbered!) would have won the All Blacks in the semi on Eden Park taking into account their woeful performances in New Zealand! The All Black B team almost klapped the proteas in PE, made about 20 line breaks in PE, had a try disallowed because the SA TMO exceeded his powers, proteas lost to the Aussies a week earlier! Come now boys and girls, don't blame BL, blame your protea players who cannot win with 70% possession. Do not treat winning as your birth right - we know who the leading rugby nation is. The bokkies cost SA a semi against the mighty AB on Eden Park! Did Bryce Lawrence pull an Aussie player down? Did BL run from his own goal line aka Skalk Burger? Did BL injure the overrrated Prussouw? Move on boys and girls, the bokkies were lucky against Wales and Manu Samoa and were showed up against the Aussies. How many of you remember the Aussies klapping the bokkies / proteas in Durban prior to the world cup? Thought so, the proteas record against the Aussies in the last 6 games is pathetic.

      backstabber.adder - 2012-07-31 21:54

      Fake Maori. It's obvious that the officiating of Bryce Lawrence and Wayne Barnes promoted the exit of the Boks and the ABs from RWCs 2007 and 2011 respectively. Both teams also have themselves to blame for making silly mistakes to facilitate their own exit. It is laugably ironic that you even mention "birthright", because that is the generally accepted premise for bragging rights in the international arena. Take a good look at yourself, your parents, your siblings, your family and where you come from - the very basic premises for bragging rights. Add to that the school, university, town and country you attended, or come from, and your list is close to complete. The varings has always been a great team, no question. Sadly, you can lay no claim to the varing victories by any stretch of the imagination. Bitterness and hate alone does not change your right to bragging rights. And even if you had the balls to emigrate to New Zealand your accent would still give you away. Shame. Kia Parra! Heheheheehe...

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