It’s fulltime at the Westpac Stadium in Wellington and the All Blacks have emerged 26-13 winners after an entertaining Test match.
With that victory, the All Blacks have clinched the series but for the second week in a row, the game swung on a red card received by a French player.
After 12 minutes, Benjamin Fall received a straight red card as he made contact with Beauden Barrett in the air. The All Blacks out-half landed on his head which resulted in Fall and Barrett leaving the field for the remainder of the match (Barrett failed his HIA).
There are many views on the incident but one which is beginning to emerge is the role of Anton Lienert-Brown in the build-up.
Viewers have noticed that Lienert-Brown gives Fall a nudge before the Frenchman competes for the ball with many believing that it proved detrimental to Fall’s attempted jump.
So if Anton Lienert-Brown pushes Fall, who as a result clatters Beauden Barrett so that he lands on his head, shouldn't ALB as the instigator have seen red? Je dis ça, je dis rien!#NZLvFRA pic.twitter.com/BdRTuBrzk1
— Paul Eddison (@pauleddison) June 16, 2018
The nudge from Anton Lienert-Brown on Benjamin Fall is very subtle. Lienert-Brown doesn't look at him until they're alongside each other, either. It's almost reactionary but definitely affects Fall's take-off. Officiating is a truly brutal gig. pic.twitter.com/dNysni1Byg
— Charlie Morgan (@CharlieFelix) June 16, 2018
If Lienert-Brown doesn't nudge Fall off the ball, guaranteed he's up in the air earlier.
Correct decision to give the red card, but this should be a mitigating factor when the incident is reviewed. https://t.co/bV0wezFM58
— Ali Stokes (@alistokesrugby) June 16, 2018
I wouldn’t call it a push, but Anton Lienert-Brown does make contact, distracting Fall. In my opinion it is a legitimate competitive challenge for the ball, which does have unfortunate consequences for Barrett. #NZLVFRA
— Chris (@bri66o) June 16, 2018
That slight push by Lienert-Brown definitely stops him jumping early. He takes another two steps to regain his balance before taking off. TMO missed the interference. If he’s not in a position to catch the ball due to foul pay, surely it’s a penalty to France?!
— Owain Glyndŵr (@IgtIan) June 16, 2018
Interesting how the NZ commentary team haven’t mentioned anything about the push from lienert-brown on Benjamin Fall before his red card ? #NZLvFRA
— Luke Reynolds (@reynolds_l_) June 16, 2018
When Fall is cited for the incident, Lienert-Brown’s role in the incident may be used a mitigating factor to reduce Fall’s potential ban.