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Anorak | ITV’s Biased Studio Experts Say Sam Warburton’s Red Card Was Wrong: Spine Injuries Are OK With Steve Rider’s Team

ITV’s Biased Studio Experts Say Sam Warburton’s Red Card Was Wrong: Spine Injuries Are OK With Steve Rider’s Team

by | 15th, October 2011

SO. There is was. Sam Warburton, the 23-year-old captain of Wales got sent off for a stupid and dangerous tackle in the Rugby World Cup semi-final and as he walked off the pitch so went his side’s chances of victory. But the French are such a prosaic, plodding bunch of bovine flatfoots, and the Welsh so vibrant and up-for-it, that the reds almost won. The Welsh should have won, on account of scoring the game’s only try, which is the purpose of the game.

On ITV, referee Alain Rolland’s decision to dismiss Warburton was castigated. Listening to the monocular experts in the blinkered ITV studio – and how ITV must have prayed for a British win and with it a big audience for the final and lots of advertising money – the actual victim, one Vincent Clerc, was utterly forgotten. It was luck that he never landed on his head and damaged his spine.

Law 10.4 on ‘spear tackles’ reads:

“It is dangerous play to lift a player from the ground and drop or drive that player into the ground whilst that that player’s feet are still off the ground so that the player’s head and/or upper body come into contact with the ground.”

Ahead of the tournament a directive was also issued to referees:

“Foul play – high tackles, grabbing and twisting of the head and tip tackles to be emphasised, with referees to start at red and work backwards.”

Sport is all about the rules. TV sport is allbout the heated debate:

ITV sets about undermining the referee:


Francois Pienaar (ITV studio): “It was a dangerous tackle, yes. A penalty, yes. Never a red card. Sam Warburton has been one of the cleanest players at the World Cup. He (Rolland) has killed the game. I’m livid. It is dangerous, but this is a World Cup semi-final with all the world watching. You have all the technology at your disposal, why not go to the video referee or ask your touch judge?”

Lawrence Dallaglio (ITV studio): “Alain Rolland has refereed all over the world and did the last final. He is supposed to be one of the best referees in the world. But he has made a terrible decision.”

Michael Owen (Welsh): “It was a really sweet tackle.”

Steve Rider (ITV anchor): “If he’s [referee Alain Rolland] watching this studio he’ll know he made the wrong call…one of the worst refereeing decisions the World Cup has seen.” ]]

“Can we try and find any justice for Rolland’s decision at all?”

In France, Le Figaro opines (translation):

So, of course, the red card by Sam Warburton at the 18th minute going to talk for long. Severe? Ask Fabrice Estebanez, punished with a yellow card but also suspended three weeks (thus ended World), if this is unfair …

Little wakeup call, necessary, Fabien Pelous that explained in a previous post of “Melee raised” : “Rugby has been devised by the English to teach the son of aristocrats, for a military career, to obey orders. This leads to complicated rules and a referee Almighty. The goal: not to discuss the decisions, overcome the sense of injustice, and leave the fight.”

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Picture 11 of 13

Fans watch Wales play France in their World Cup Semi Final match on the big screen at the Millennium Stadium, Cardiff.



Posted: 15th, October 2011 | In: Key Posts, Sports Comments (6) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed: RSS 2.0 | TrackBack | Permalink