Ok so while SA celebrates the quarter-final victory over Wales the major talking point over the weekend was the penalty given by South African referee Craig Joubert in the dying moments of the game between Australia and Scotland. The controversial offside call was awarded with Scotland in the lead by 2 points with seconds to go and the kick was successful giving Australia the win. Joubert was heavily critised for making an incorrect judgement and for not consulting the TMO (television match official). It didn’t help that he ran off the field immediately after the final whistle.
Still plenty of debate over whether he made the right call so let’s have another look shall we. First off let’s get the TMO issue out of the way…World Rugby laws do NOT allow the referee to consult the TMO in that situation. Done. That’s it, no more moaning about TMO.
Next…the offside penalty. Let’s have a look at the footage and see if it’s deliberate or accidental offside which would determine whether it’s a penalty or a scrum to Australia.
Mmmm…keep in mind that you have the luxury of seeing that in slow motion from several angles. Joubert had to see that in real time and make a spot decision. Tough to tell who it touches first, the Scottish number 20 (Strauss) or the Ozzie scrumhalf (Phipps). I’m leaning towards Phipps, which would make it a scrum, but it could well be that it touched both players at the same time. Standing where Joubert was standing when he made the call looks like it came off the shoulder of Strauss hence his decision.
What say you?
As for him running off the field after the final whistle without shaking players hands we won’t know the exact reason till Joubert gives an explanation. There is talk though of him being thrown with a bottle which may be why he ran off so quickly.