Wales vs France: Referee Jaco Peyper sparks Rugby World Cup controversy after posing with Welsh fans


South African referee Jaco Peyper has angered French rugby fans, after posing in a photo with Welsh fans mimicking a crucial Rugby World Cup quarterfinal red card offence against France.

Controversy clouded the match, with two calls from Peyper under the spotlight.

Referee Jaco Peyper shows a red card to France's Sebastien Vahaamahina.

CHRISTOPHE ENA/AP

Referee Jaco Peyper shows a red card to France’s Sebastien Vahaamahina.

With 30 minutes to go France lock Sebastien Vahaamahina was given a red card for foul play, and in the 74th minute Welshman Ross Moriarty’s try was clouded by an apparent forward pass.

The try earned Wales a 20-19 win and a place in next Sunday’s semifinal against South Africa.

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After the match Peyper was caught on camera seemingly mimicking the game-changing red card shown to Vahaamahina while apparently posing for a picture with Wales fans.

The image is circulating on social media showing Peyper posing with jubilant Wales fans – and apparently making reference to the incident, raising his elbow to seemingly mimic the clash while alongside several Wales supporters, Wales Online reported.

After consultation with the TMO, Peyper showed little hesitation in showing the Frenchman a red card.

After footage showed the replays of the incident, Peyper said: “It’s very clear. You all think that’s a red card?”

Wales players celebrate after Ross Moriarty scores a try. Referee Jaco Peyper awarded the try, despite the ball going forward in to Moriarty's hands.

CHRISTOPHE ENA/AP

Wales players celebrate after Ross Moriarty scores a try. Referee Jaco Peyper awarded the try, despite the ball going forward in to Moriarty’s hands.

While the photo was taken in jest, the image has already sparked controversy.

“Shame on that man,” one French fan wrote.

Another said: “Card fully justified, but after this photo I do wonder about the impartiality of the man in black.”

 

Others called for Peyper to be left out of semifinal contention.

“I’ve never rated Jaco Peyper that highly as a referee. I can only hope this photo excludes him as a World Rugby pick for the semi-finals,” said one Twitter user.

Another said the photo was “Shameful. Like his performance,” while French account Rugby Amateur said: “If this photo is not a fake, it is particularly disturbing”.

A Welsh Twitter user also said the photo was wrong.

Meanwhile, French outlet actu.fr labelled the photo “embarrassing” and “unimaginable”.

France coach Jacques Brunel has expressed disappointment at Wales being awarded a match-winning try after television replays showed the ball straying forward before the touchdown.

It remains to be seen if Peyper will take charge of another game at this year’s tournament, with referees for the semi-finals set to be announced later this week.

It is not the first time a referee has overstepped the line at the world cup off in siding with teams.

Kiwi ref Ben O’Keeffe appeared to commit a cardinal sin during Australia’s thrilling 39-21 come-from-behind victory over Fiji in Sapporo.

The Wellington-based official was captured on TV footage apparently giving Fiji fullback Kini Murimurivalu a low-five as he walked back following a try that put the Pacific Islanders 21-12 in front. The incident has subsequently caused a stir in Australian media.



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Source link : https://www.stuff.co.nz/sport/rugby/rugby-world-cup/rwc-2019-japan/116739746/referee-jaco-peyper-sparks-rugby-world-cup-controversy-after-posing-with-welsh-fans

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Publish date : 2019-10-20 23:01:00

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