South African referee Jaco Peyper’s controversial photo with Welsh fans cost him officiating the Rugby World Cup semifinal between New Zealand and England.
The South African Referees Association claim Peyper was given the job on Monday only to have it taken off him on Tuesday as the storm over his photo escalated.
World Rugby subsequently named Welshman Nigel Owens to control the game.
Peyper was photographed with Welsh fans mimicking the elbow to the head that saw him red car French lock Sebastien Vahaamahina in last weekend’s quarterfinal against France.
* Beating ABs in Youngs’ blood
* Cheika, Castle in heated clash
* Wallabies should target Eddie
* Why ABs look so fresh at RWC
* Bumpy road of Eddie’s England
* Whitelock: Weird to play Heinz
* England: ‘It’s why we love Eddie’
* RWC results and pool standings
In a statement, the governing body said: “World Rugby can confirm that the match officials selection committee did not consider Jaco Peyper for selection this weekend.
“Peyper recognises that a picture of him with Wales fans, which appeared on social media after the Wales versus France quarter-inal, was inappropriate and he has apologised.”
Peyper wouldn’t have been able to whistle the other semifinal between South Africa and Wales because of neutrality.
The South African referees released their own statement and hit out at the way Peyper had been handled, claiming he was just having a bit of “fun” with the Welsh fans.
“On Monday, World Rugby chose Peyper for the semifinal match between England and New Zealand,” they said.
“On Tuesday morning they took him off the match and instead appointed Nigel Owens. In effect he was suspended, not allowed to perform for a match.
“That is what would happen to a player guilty of foul play on the field.
“Peyper’s involvement in the picture hardly qualified as foul play. It also is highly unlikely that he would have posed for the picture with the intention of publishing it for the world to see.
“It seemed merely a bit of fun, and most people would be happy to see a referee acting as a normal person. It would certainly not have endeared referees to that group of Welsh supporters if he had rebuffed their friendly joy.”
The South African body also felt Peyper had been unfairly punished when weighed up against other off-field antics at this tournament.
They used the example of the Uruguay team who escaped sanctions following reports of a brawl and damage caused to a Kumamoto bar.
“Did World Rugby suspend the players who seriously misbehaved in a bar/club at night? They did far, far worse than Peyper did,” the statement read.
“Rugby is still a game which is played and therefore should be enjoyed. Referees are a part of that game. Surely nobody in his right mind would expect them to stride off like solemn undertakers to post-match solitude.
“After the first round of pool matches at the World Cup, World Rugby told the rugby world that its referees had not been up to scratch, thus inviting criticism of referees.
“To some it seemed like a strange bird fouling its own nest. This criticism was losing its impetus and then along came the Peyper incident.
“He then sent Vahaamahina off the field, showing him a red card. It is a decision that has found general acceptance, including by Jacques Brunel, France’s coach.”
Source link : https://www.stuff.co.nz/sport/rugby/rugby-world-cup/rwc-2019-japan/116839894/all-blacks-v-england-south-african-refs-hit-out-as-jaco-peyper-loses-glamour-semifinal-job
Publish date : 2019-10-23 17:50:00