After World Rugby confirmed that Craig Joubert had made an incorrect call with the last minute decision that cost Scotland a place in the World Cup semi-finals, ex-international referee Jonathan Kaplan has come forward with a proposed solution.
Since the incredibly competitive Australia vs Scotland quarter final on Sunday evening, many have been pouring over one incident in particular that had a deciding effect on the outcome of the game.
As the clash entered the final moments, South African referee Craig Joubert awarded Australia a penalty for an incident which in actual fact should have resulted in a scrum.
However, according to the rules of the game, Joubert was not entitled to consult the TMO on this occasion as it was not a try scoring situation nor was there any foul play involved. This restriction is in place to ensure that referees do not become overly reliant on the TMO and hence slow down the speed of the game.
However, ex-international referee Jonathan Kaplan has put forward an interesting suggestion which could act as a solution to the current dilemma facing World Rugby.
Writing for RateTheRef.co.za Kaplan explains how the Joubert incident could have easily been avoided with the introduction of a captain’s challenge.
I have long said that technology is here to stay. But for all the interventions by the TMOs, particularly in respect of foul play, they were hamstrung and could not contribute to one of the defining moments of the tournament.
This was not a try-scoring situation and it was not foul play. A captain’s challenge may have solved the problem. We have to give more power to the players and coaches (and allow them to challenge questionable calls) and less to the men in the middle (the best of whom are making errors quite regularly).
The game has become too quick and too complex for even the best to get it right, and perhaps we need a revolutionary change in thinking when it comes to game administration. Actually, not perhaps, but definitely!