British & Irish Lions

Rugby Australia slam Rassie Erasmus' shock refereeing video

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Rassie Erasmus.
Rassie Erasmus.
  • Rugby Australia have taken a dim view towards SA Rugby director of rugby Rassie Erasmus's video that criticised the officiating of the first Test between the Springboks and the British and Irish Lions.
  • World Rugby said they won't be making any comments while Rugby Australia were not happy with Erasmus's comments.
  • Rugby Australia chief executive officer Andy Marinos said Erasmus's behaviour was unacceptable.

SA Rugby director of rugby Rassie Erasmus's 62-minute video that highlighted officiating inconsistencies has been met with some ire by Rugby Australia.

In a short and terse statement, World Rugby also noted the comments.

READ | First Test fallout: 7 shocking calls Rassie Erasmus exposed that will rattle World Rugby

"World Rugby notes the comments made by Rassie Erasmus. The nature of these will be raised with the union via the usual official channels and no further comment will be made at this stage," the statement said.

Rugby Australia, who are headed by former Sanzaar chief executive officer Andy Marinos, a former Wales and Stormers centre, took more umbrage and closed ranks around referee Nic Berry.

BIL1.mp4 from JJ on Vimeo.

Berry, who's handling of the first Test the Springboks lost to the British and Irish Lions in Cape Town last week came in for scathing criticism from Erasmus, is from Australia.

Marinos said Erasmus's behaviour was unacceptable and that there is no place for abusing match officials.

"Match officials form the very fabric of our game and the game would not exist without them," Marinos said.

"As a highly regarded and respected international referee appointed by World Rugby, the attack on Nic's integrity, character and reputation is unacceptable."

Marinos is of the knowledge that some of the issues raised by Erasmus aren't accurate and as Rugby Australia, they have to support Berry.

"We have been in contact with World Rugby, under whose auspices this Test series sit and we understand they are actively reviewing this matter as some of the facts presented were not accurate," Marinos said.

"It is important to ensure public attacks of this nature are not tolerated. We will continue to provide support to Nic at this time as his physical and mental well-being remains a priority for us."

The Springboks face the Lions for the second Test in Cape TOwn. Kick-off is at 18:00.


South Africa

15 Willie Le Roux, 14 Cheslin Kolbe, 13 Lukhanyo Am, 12 Damian de Allende, 11 Makazole Mapimpi, 10 Handre Pollard, 9 Faf de Klerk, 8 Jasper Wiese, 7 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 6 Siya Kolisi (captain), 5 Franco Mostert, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Frans Malherbe, 2 Bongi Mbonambi, 1 Steven Kitshoff

Substitutes: 16 Malcolm Marx, 17 Trevor Nyakane, 18 Vincent Koch, 19 Lood de Jager, 20 Marco van Staden, 21 Kwagga Smith, 22 Herschel Jantjies, 23 Damian Willemse

British & Irish Lions:

15 Stuart Hogg (Scotland), 14 Anthony Watson (England), 13 Chris Harris (Scotland), 12 Robbie Henshaw (Ireland), 11 Duhan van der Merwe (Scotland), 10 Dan Biggar (Wales), 9 Conor Murray (Ireland) 8 Jack Conan (Ireland), 7 Tom Curry (England), 6 Courtney Lawes (England), 5 Alun Wyn Jones (captain, Wales), 4 Maro Itoje (England), 3 Tadhg Furlong (Ireland), 2 Luke Cowan-Dickie (England), 1 Mako Vunipola (England)

Substitutes: 16 Ken Owens (Wales), 17 Rory Sutherland (Scotland) 18 Kyle Sinckler (England), 19 Tadhg Beirne (Ireland), 20 Taulupe Faletau (Wales), 21 Ali Price (Scotland), 22 Owen Farrell (England), 23 Elliot Daly (England)

* This article has been updated. Sport24 originally reported in our headline that World Rugby had taken issue with the Erasmus video, but that was not the case. Sport24 apologises for the error.

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