Kaplan highlights ref error in Bulls loss
Cape Town - The Chiefs scored one of the tries of this year’s Super Rugby competition against the Bulls in Rotorua last Friday, but the try should not have stood, according former South African Test referee Jonathan Kaplan.
The Bulls led 15-3 after 15 minutes, but soon found themselves on level pegging as the Chiefs, running from all corners, responded with two quickfire tries.
The Chiefs eventually won the game 34-20.
But it was their second try which caught the attention of many a rugby enthusiast. It was a spectacular period of attack from the Chiefs, who ran from deep, before left wing Bryce Heem rounded off in the corner.
Kaplan, via a column on his website www.ratetheref.co.za, acknowledged that it was a spectacular try, but said it should not have been awarded.
He wrote: “Excellent referee Chris Pollock missed a clear forward pass from (Damian) McKenzie to (Ross) Filipo in the build-up to one of the tries of the competition, and the Chiefs were back in it.
“It is simply not good enough to let this type of thing go. The ARs (assistant referees) should have been involved if they were in line, which I think they were.”
Kaplan though admitted that the Chiefs were the better side on the day.
“It’s not about who would have won... The Chiefs would have. Every time. But we are talking professional sport. And this is not professional!
“The Chiefs were by far the better team even though they were weakened by injury. They have fantastic ball players and when they get their game going, can be quite devastating!
“I thought Polly (Pollock) did really well in general, let the game rock along , wasn’t too pedantic ( although he did ping (Victor) Matfield for a very marginal infringement in advancing, and was incorrect at a maul penalty against the Bulls where the Chiefs lock was a part of the original maul and then by his own volition, disengaged ), respected both teams ambitions, and was for the most part accurate.
“His yellow card of (Sam) Cane followed a warning, and he acted with impunity and accuracy which I thought was a departure from some of the waffle I have been subjected to in recent weeks.”