Fri 30 Jul 2021 | 08:00

Fans ready to start 'crowdfund' for Rassie

Fans ready to start 'crowdfund' for Rassie
Fri 30 Jul 2021 | 08:00
Fans ready to start 'crowdfund' for Rassie
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REACTION: Springbok supporters are ready to start a ‘crowdfund’ campaign, should South Africa’s Director of Rugby Rassie Erasmus be sanctioned by World Rugby.

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The possibility of a sanction against the SA Rugby boss – most likely a fine – was raised after Erasmus released a 62-minute video strongly criticising the refereeing in last Saturday’s first Test against the British and Irish Lions.

The video contains 20-odd clips that highlight errors by Australian referee Nic Berry and his assistants in the match won 22-17 by the B&I Lions.

Berry and the other three officials will also handle the second Test in Cape Town on Saturday.

New Zealand’s Ben O’Keeffe will take over from Berry with the whistle – while Berry and Mathieu Raynal of France will be the assistant referees.

South African Marius Jonker, who was subjected to considerable pressure from public media statements by B&I Lions coach Warren Gatland in the build-up to the first Test, will operate as the TMO in the second and third Tests as well.

World Rugby reacted to the video on Thursday by saying it “notes the comments made by Rassie Erasmus.

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The nature of these will be raised with the (South African) union via the usual official channels and no further comment will be made at this stage.”

The Bok fans did not waste time to start calling for a ‘crowdfund’ campaign in support of Erasmus.

Some offered to donate cash, others to solicit cash from abroad and some even suggested they are willing to ‘sell body parts’ to help raise funds.

* In another twist articles emerged from two decades ago when Australia and New Zealand referees were exposed for conspiring to sideline their South African counterparts from decision-making processes.

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In the now-infamous ‘Teach the Japies [South Africans] a lesson’ saga, New Zealand Manager of Refereeing Development Keith Lawrence was forced to apologise to South African counterpart Freek Burger over derogatory remarks made about Burger.

An e-mail had been sent to arrange a conference call between the three Super 12 referee managers, but it contained earlier dialogue – not intended for South Africa – which had taken place between Lawrence and his Australian counterpart.

Keith Lawrence is the father of Bryce Lawrence – infamous for his error-riddled performance in the quarterfinal at the 2011 World Cup match between South Africa and Australia. The Wallabies won 11-9 in one of the most contentious matches in World Cup history, resulting in Lawrence getting death threats.

Some fans were quick to reproduce the ‘Teach the Japies a lesson’ articles from back in 2000.

Relationships between the former SANZAR (South Africa, New Zealand and Australia) partners have remained strained ever since and there is a school of thought that it reflects in refereeing performances against the Springboks.

(Article continues below …)

Australasian referees conspiracy

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