Foster wants a relook at red cards
REACTION: All Black coach Ian Foster said it was too soon to comment on the red card given in his team’s loss to the Wallabies.
Foster said he would like to see the incident again, after losing a Tri-Nations and Bledisloe double-header to a resurgent Wallabies on Saturday.
Front row forward Ofa Tuungafasi was sent off in the 23rd minute of the All Blacks’ 22-24 loss, when he was adjudged to have hit Australian wing Tom Wright with a shoulder to the head in a high tackle.
The decision seemed harsh, with first contact appearing to be at shoulder height, with referee Nic Berry sending Tuungafasi off after seeing a replay on the big screen.
Australia were also reduced to 14 men later in the half when debutant Lachlan Swinton saw red for a similar dangerous tackle to the head of Sam Whitelock.
Foster said it was too early to comment on the card.
“It is what it is right now,” Foster said.
“We’ll obviously have a look at it. I don’t think now is the right time to comment.”
All Blacks captain Sam Cane said he thought neither Tuungafasi nor Swinton had been looking to harm their opponents.
“It’s a fast moving game and there’s big collisions, and every now and then players get it slightly wrong,” Cane said.
“I don’t think either was malicious – they were just slightly off.”
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Swinton’s high tackle offence looked more clear cut than Tuungafasi’s and Australian coach Dave Rennie had no problems with either of the red cards being shown.
“In the end we’ve got to deal with the law – the law says contact with the head starts with a red card,” he said.
“I’m happy with both decisions made.
“What we don’t want is reckless tackles. All we want is consistency.
“It was hard to argue that once they got a red card ours wasn’t as well, so we have to take it on the chin.”