S14 refs announced

2010-02-08 11:48

Johannesburg - Some of the world's top rugby referees are set to whistle the first round of this year's Super 14 competition kicking off this Friday.

Announcing the match officials appointments for weeks one to five of the competition, Sanzar referees manager, Lyndon Bray, said having a strong start was important.

"We want our senior referees leading from the front in week one, particularly with the new Sanzar focus on four priority areas designed to free up the ball, give clarity to rulings at the tackle area and scrum time, and penalise players advancing from off-side positions during kicking phases.

"I'm heartened by the results of applying these priority areas during pre-season games. The signs are good for the start of season," Bray said.

The experienced referees include Australia's Stuart Dickinson who whistles the first match for 2010 with the Blues against the Hurricanes in Auckland, and former New Zealand referee, now in Australia, Steve Walsh, who returns to international refereeing in the Force v Brumbies game in Perth.

South African Jonathan Kaplan will referee last year's Super 14 champions, the Bulls, who face the Cheetahs in Bloemfontein on Saturday.

Fellow South Africans Craig Joubert, Jaco Peyper and New Zealanders Chris Pollock and Keith Brown will all have first round duties with the whistle.


  • Shark Bone - 2010-02-08 12:14

    Kaplan is a known Bulls apologist,his continued handling of Bulls matches does not go down well. It's a given that Bulls will win on Sat with him in the middle as their sixteenth man.

  • Wild Bill - 2010-02-08 12:53

    Please Shark Bone! Don't blame the ref even before the match has started! This doesn't bode well for a very exciting super 14 season, let's be fair and give the ref's a good start this season! Enjoy the game although the Sharks are not playing in Bloem!

  • Biff - 2010-02-08 12:54

    Sour Grapes there Shark Bone, Kaplan is the best in the world.Learn the Laws of the game and then you might see that.

  • MM - 2010-02-08 12:55

    Ai, ai Shark Bone - are you stressing already? No French or Argentinian fly-halves this year? Kaplan is not number one in the world for being bias - that would rather get him kicked out of the profession. His record is against the Bulls - and that is because the Bulls lost on their own accord each time - not because of him.

  • Ian - 2010-02-08 12:57

    A rather libellous staement don't you think? I would expect the Bulls to win anyway, even with Os du Randt reffing!

  • Forest - 2010-02-08 13:04

    @Shark Bone - I sense a little bitterness there. hehehe. Are you implying that the bulls won both the Super 14 and the Currie Cup last year due to the influence of Jonathan Kaplan?

  • Jor - 2010-02-08 13:16

    Shark Bone you have a point. But this is a chance to see if last years final was just a bad day at the office for Kapan or if he is just rotten. I think the Cheetahs start the game 15 - 0 down before kick-off. Lets hope I am wrong.

  • Pieter (I love rugby) - 2010-02-08 14:28

    @Jor: U have a point the Bulls have a 15 - 0 advantage, that is 15 rugby players against zero or 15 want to be rugby players.

  • Gary - 2010-02-08 14:58

    Why have they not mentioned using the touch judge in a few more areas. 1. Lineout’s, the linesman should look for skew throws and teams jumping and or walking across the middle line the ref should look at all other infringements. 2. FORWARD Passes my pet hate in rugby. I was watch the 7s and you can see the lines man running next to the wing and still cant see the ball is forward. They seem to see if they can out run the players rather than look to see if the balls is forward. I don’t quite know what the linesman’s mandate is but if the above is in their mandate they definitely do squat about it and if it is not then they should look at introducing it.

  • JV - 2010-02-08 22:49

    Stuart the Dick a top ref? The man can not even be trusted with a highschool third team match.

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