TMO ru­ins match for ev­ery­one

South Taranaki Star - - FRONT PAGE - GOR­DON BROWN

OPIN­ION: Ref­er­ees and match of­fi­cials gen­er­ally get a bad rap in the me­dia and sel­dom are they sin­gled out for praise.

That is go­ing to con­tinue to­day. What was worse though was it seems that hav­ing a vig­i­lant on-field team of three match of­fi­cials wasn’t enough on Fri­day night when the Hur­ri­canes beat the Sun­wolves 43-15.

Ref­eree Jamie Nut­brown (no re­la­tion) spent much of the match lis­ten­ing to the con­stant stream of ad­vice from tele­vi­sion match of­fi­cial Ben Skeen. His in­flu­ence on the game was at a sim­i­lar level to that of Kim Jongun on North Korea. Noth­ing hap­pens with­out him. Dis­al­lowed tries, sus­pect ‘‘shoul­der rolls’, high tack­les, penal­ties, knock-ons, you name it Ben found it. Poor Jamie, a rel­a­tively rookie ref, clearly felt obliged to hu­mour him. Trou­ble was it ru­ined the game for play­ers and view­ers alike.

*Sports fol­low­ers in Taranaki were un­der­stand­ably up­set when Stuff dis­con­tin­ued the roles of re­gional-based sports re­porters Glenn McLean and Chris Reive in the daily pa­per. You’ll be pleased to know that it’s worked out well for both. McLean is now the Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Man­ager with the Hur­ri­canes, based in Welling­ton and faces the un­en­vi­able task of hav­ing to travel to every match with the team, wher­ever in the world they may be play­ing. Sigh. Reive, a tal­ented young man, who is at the start of his ca­reer, is now with the New Zealand Her­ald sports desk and one of his rounds is yacht­ing. As in the Amer­ica’s Cup and wher­ever that may take him.

*An im­por­tant foot­note. On Satur­day night, Taranaki ‘s No 1 rugby ref, Paul Wil­liams, had an ex­cel­lent match when he con­trolled the Blues Jaguares game. He was au­thor­i­tive through­out and clearly ex­plained his rea­sons be­hind each de­ci­sion and made it clear he wasn’t go­ing to take any un­due dis­re­spect from the play­ers. It wasn’t his fault the match never flowed.

This one got past the TMO. Hur­ri­canes Jordie Bar­rett scores a try dur­ing the Hur­ri­canes vs Sun­wolves Su­per Rugby match.

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