Shake up refereeing — Hansen

Steve Hansen
Steve Hansen
All Black coach Steve Hansen has taken a swipe at World Rugby saying common sense is being ignored and something had to be done for the sake of the game.

He also said a proposed two-challenge system used by coaches had fallen on deaf ears and the man in the middle was no longer in charge.

The test series against the French was littered with refereeing controversies and that continued on Saturday night at Forsyth Barr Stadium.

All Black first five-eighth Damian McKenzie scored a try but the French felt replacement halfback Baptiste Serin was impeded by referee John Lacey.

"It is an area of the game  World Rugby needs to take some ownership of and lead. I keep saying the game is not black and white. It is a fluid game that is going to have grey patches," Hansen said.

"It is about intention. It is pretty obvious when someone is intending to hurt someone and when they don’t. While we are busy trying to eradicate concussion and stuff we have to also acknowledge our game is a contact sport and there is going to be the odd accident.

"I think they have set a precedent when Angus [referee Angus Gardner] did everything right by the book with the French red card and they let him off. They need to now go away and have a look at themselves. Must be obvious to them as well as us that common sense must surely prevail."

He said to say referee Lacey helped McKenzie score the try was ridiculous.

"If anyone else had scored that try, no-one would have moaned about it.  The French halfback ran into the referee, the referee didn’t run into him.

"We have not really changed the way we ref. There is one guy controlling the game and he is not. We had a TMO last night who had a lot to say ...  who is controlling the game?"

Hansen had proposed a challenge system — similar to that used in cricket — where coaches had two challenges a game to query calls.He said the feedback he got about the idea was negative.

"We just overcomplicate the simple things ...  I’ve probably opened a big hornet’s nest here and I will get a slap on the knuckles for talking about it."It has got to a point where we have to do something. It is affecting the game, and affecting those who are refereeing the game."

"Foul play is really obvious. Again common sense would tell you. Anyone watching a game would see what is deliberate foul play: kicking someone, punching someone, pulling them down in midair. Those things are obvious. You deal with them, bang, red card, you’re off.

"If Beauden hadn’t landed on his head, and I don’t know how the French guy controls that, that  would not have been a red card. So now we are giving red cards in how you fall, which seems ridiculous to me. If you go in there and the challenge is not right, then shown a  red card and off for 10 minutes let someone else on.

"But don’t spoil the game. It needs to be sorted out with a common sense approach because our game is not black and white."

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