SANZAR Disciplinary process a farce
July 19, 2012 in Uncategorized
I was reading Planet-Rugby’s Hot/Not (http://www.planetrugby.com/story/0,25883,16016_7908354,00.html) feature yesterday and saw the saw Francois Hougard’s name in the “Not” column. I wasn’t too surprised by this because recently he wasn’t firing on all cylinders like he did at the start of the season, but the reason why he was there was because he is the only player in the Super 15 to receive a red card this season.
And suddenly I realized it was true.
In a season where hardly a weekend went by without punches being thrown, the only red card that was handed out was for an unintentional spear tackle. That’s it.
As a referee myself, I know exactly how dangerous a spear tackle can be and how serious the powers that be are to rid the game of this situation. I also know that a spear tackle can do a lot more damage to a players health than even a punch from Lenox Lewis can inflict, but what’s the card for? Is it for the consequences or for the intent?
You’ll struggle to find a players capable of intentionally throwing a player to the ground with the purpose of breaking that player’s neck. This is something that, if it is done on the street, can have a person tried for attempted murder. I don’t think there’s a lot of potential murderers playing in the Super 15 the moment.
In my opinion, most cases where spear tackles are executed, it merely is a case of miss timing by the tackler rather than intent, so why give the player a red card for something as accidental as a knock on?
But, nobody lands his fist on someone else’s face without the intention to inflict some kind of pain. That’s a red card offence no matter how you look at it. But how many punch ups went by without even an off field yellow card for the players involved? And I’m not talking about players pushing and pulling each other. I’m talking about landing a punch square in the player’s face.
Like this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IkXjw6xsGfM
And almost every Aussie derby played at the start of the season.
Did the officials think that, when they let the first one go, it will stop? Did this inaction force them to do nothing with the other incidents? I hope SANZAR clears this up before the Rugby Championship starts because, no matter how old school you want the game to be, fighting has no place in the game as should be treated in the same manner as a spear tackle.