Riddle me this: Wayne Barnes – You Suck!

8 10 2007

Riddler?  One-eyed All Black fan!What a turn of events on Saturday. Completely gutted by the results and justifiably so. What was supposed to be payback week turned into ugly repeats of the past for Aussie and New Zealand.

Firstly the impotent English found their viagra and raped and pillaged the Aussies. Then in the shock of the tournament, the French beat the All Blacks, albeit aided significantly by some terrible refereeing from a clown named Wayne Barnes who is now at the top of New Zealand’s 1st hated list and likely to be for a long time to come.

The joke that has been the Northern Hemisphere for the last four weeks finally gave the Northern Hemisphere something to be vocal and proud about and the Southern Hemisphere a big kick in the guts to boot.

Onto the reviews:

England 12 Australia 10
England roll on… This is a game where I tipped the English to win the forward battles and the Aussie to win the backline battles. This is how it played out and although I didn’t think much of the Australian pack, their performance was nothing short of pathetic and huge questions need to be asked. I thought they would get enough ball to their superior backline but even this was beyond them.

England beat them to a bloody pulp in the forwards for all 80 minutes. They where faster to the breakdown, rarely gave their own ball away and dominant at the set pieces. As dominant as their forwards were though, their backline was an obvious weakness. If they had a half decent backline England would have run away with this. The Aussies easily won the day in the backline. Most times the Australian’s got the ball they would make a line break and every time it went into the backline they looked dangerous. However so pathetic was the effort of the forwards, the backline rarely got a sniff of the ball and when they did they found it hard to retain possession with their forwards.

Had the Aussie backs seen more of the ball they would have won this game but all credit to England. They controlled the possession and made the much vaunted backline a non entity through lack of possession. A well deserved victory by England but unless their backline steps up they won’t be going much further. The French forwards won’t be as easily bullied as the Australian ones were.
After being ridiculed by many, suggesting they wouldn’t even make it out of pool play, Aussie skipper, Sterling Mortlock - stopped in his tracksEngland have given their fans and more importantly themselves self belief and for a team which has been so down in confidence for the last four years that could be a timely tonic.

As for Australia, they need to seriously address their forward problems. For years they have been criticised, and I think this loss might be the impetus for them to finally stop living in denial and realise their entire pack is rubbish. A complete overhaul of how they train their forwards needs to be implemented.

France 20 New Zealand 18
Without taking away too much from France who came up with one of the greatest defensive efforts in the history of the game, they can consider themselves fortunate to have a couple of terrible decisions by one of, if not the worst referee in the game. This may sound like sour grapes but not too many impartial judges would disagree.
Firstly at the 45 minute mark Luke McAlister got sin-binned for what was supposedly taking a player out. Looking at the replay you could see he was committed. He didn’t change angle. The interference was there and a penalty was justified but the action was not intentional. His binning resulted in France adding 10 unanswered points and leveling the contest. What was almost amazing is that a French player did exactly the same thing to an All Black 20 minutes later right in-front of this clown of a ref and he simply waved it on.
Second was the forward pass at the 68 minute mark that won the game for
France. This pass went around 1-2 metres forward and was not called back. Despite the protest of many players and having the ability to go to the TMO to check the pass, the referee did nothing. For such an important game to be decided in such a terrible manner was a travesty of justice.

Jubilant France Onto the game. Well the first forty minutes involved the French kicking for field position and the All Blacks countering with kicks of their own or incisive runs. The first half saw the All Blacks dominate the French. They could have easily chalked up more points with a bit of luck but went into the break 13-3 ahead, with the French on the back foot most of the half and seemingly without answer. The lineout that the French had targeted stood up perfectly, not losing a single throw and stealing 3 of the French throws to boot. Possession and territory were well in the All Blacks favor.

Not sure what was said at halftime but the All Blacks came out without the venom of the first half. The French threw their kicking game away and started to run the ball. 5 minutes in a terrible decision saw McAlister sin binned when a French player chipped a kick through and the chaser collided with McAlister. Despite McAlister maintaining his line which he is well within his right to do, the referee deemed it interference worthy of a yellow card. It was worth a penalty at most and most people agree with this.
After this and the resulting 3 points, the All Blacks maintained possession for the next 6 minutes. However when they finally lost possession, the French where able to find the free man in the backline and took full advantage of the man down to notch a try and convert it. With the game locked up at 13-13, the All Blacks lost Kelleher and Carter to injury almost simultaneously. On came Nick Evan’s and he made a few telling runs. The All Blacks rumbled it up to the line and after some solid forward work, Rodney Soioalo scored a try. 18-13 now. The resultant conversion was handed to McAlister to kick and he missed this.
Shortly after this Evan’s went off injured meaning both first fives were not available. It was about 65 minutes into the game now and the All Blacks had the ball and where launching an attack. A chip kick over the defence was put in and the chasing player was taken out, much like the McAlister incident 20 minutes earlier. Instead of penalizing the French the referee let play go on. shortly after this, from this possession the French got, they manage to get a try, aided by a forward pass every in the stadium saw except the blind idiot refereeing the game. Following the conversion it was 20-18 with 10 minutes to go.
Hair Bear Chabal For the next ten minutes the All Black rumbled it forward, testing the French defence who to their credit stood up to the challenge well. A number of times the French looked to impede within kicking range but the referee had no intention of blowing the whistle. In the end the French held on.
At the end of the day the better team was robbed here. It was robbed by an incompetent referee who should never be allowed to referee an international again. Incompetent refereeing and key injuries in the second half were the most deciding factors here. However with the weight of possession and territory in favour of the All Blacks, they should have put this beyond doubt where the incompetence of a referee shouldn’t have had a bearing. Well done to France on one of the most outstanding defensive efforts seen in rugby but you can thank the referee for this win. You didn’t deserve it.

Well that’s my take on the matches. No doubt I will cop a lot of flak from the French supporters calling me a bad loser and such, but the reality is the pass was forward and McAlister’s binning was a disgrace. Had it happened to your team you would be organizing lynch mobs now.

I’ll be flying the SH flag still, hoping the winner of South Africa vs Argentina can get the job done. Didn’t bother reviewing them as I couldn’t be bothered getting up to watch them. Just couldn’t get motivated and understandably so.

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19 responses

9 10 2007
Murf

I could not have summed it up better myself

9 10 2007
Panther1095

totally agree…that barnes guy was terrible

9 10 2007
Travis Laulu

Barnes you suck [edit] you [edit]!!….learn how to play the game u bloody English!!

9 10 2007
WithMalice

I understand you’re upset Travis, but have a lil’ bit of class.

9 10 2007
brumbygg9

As much as you might want to do it, it is never worth blaming the referee for a defeat. I don’t think that Barnes had a good game, but at the end of the day the ABs (like the Wobblies) simply were not good enough. Good sides find ways to win matches and the ABs have done that for the past 4 years. Unfortunately, they have this massive weight on their shoulders come RWC time and it gets too much them to overcome and they do not perform to the best of their ability.

9 10 2007
The Riddler

Rubbish Brumby. How many times have you seen the NZ rugby administration come out and openly blame the referee. Never. The NZ management always take their losses on the chin. Not this time though and rightfully so. The referee was a joke and France scored nearly all of their points through errors made by the referee benefiting them.

10 10 2007
a ref

As a neutral, I can tell you that Barnes missed just as much in favor of the All Blacks. The fact that they played a listless game, key players were injured and they missed several shots at goal is why they lost.

10 10 2007
Lenny

I am a South African supporter. I have seen a lot of bad refs, but wayne barnes’ performance is the worst by far.

It saddens me to think that 4 years of effort came to nothing because of a bad ref. Something must be done. People are losing jobs and money because of this. These days, rugby is more than a game: it is a business. Mistakes like this in the business world are dealt with harshly. I hope something is done about the idiot barnes.

10 10 2007
brumbygg9

a good friend of mine is a Kiwi and a former NPC referee. His take? “Why are we blaming the ref for our own poor performance?” Fair point….

10 10 2007
withmalice

Whilst I’m not quite going as nuts on this as The Riddler (but then, Australia wasn’t quite as impacted as the ABs), I do think that there are massive changes that need to occur in the game’s adjudication before it becomes even possible to take it to a truly world stage…
Wow… that sounds like a good idea for an article… wait a sec…

10 10 2007
GDJ

U are right – he is a shocking referee!!!! After the SA vs Tongo game I though he was going to be banished to some far away desolute island. Quite frankly, the quality of referreing at this world cup has been abysmal. Alan Lewis in the SA vs Fiji game also missed a good game – according to him the new high tackle law is only penalisable above the eyebrows – what a joke!!!! Sadly, the decision has been made and there is nothing anyone can do about it. I am just relieved that Suzi has not been blamed for this loss!!!! By the way, Barnes also missed the forward pass that led to the AB try but there has not been any comments about that. AB supporters, get over it – I expect the guys from that teeney, weeney island and the guys from the much bigger island to behave like this but not the AB supporters.

11 10 2007
Mike

good to see the ABs are taking defeat nicely. maybe one day they will grow up and learn how to win tough rugby, all it needed was a simple simple drop goal or was that beyond AB’s intelligence. After all they had enough chance to do it in the last 10 mins! You lot are starting to sound like football fans around the world – always blame the ref, I thought rugby fans carried themselves better than that.

11 10 2007
withmalice

Just gotta ask ‘Mike’… did you watch the game? Simple question, nothing behind it…

11 10 2007
Dr Gonzo

Wayne Barnes with 11 tests to his name gets to ref a world cup quarter final.
What a joke. For a game of such magnitude surely you would have an experienced ref. Another example of arrogance from the IRB. Why arent refs accountable for their actions just like players are. With the level of refereeing at this world cup, I believe technology has to become more prevalent. Why not have a look upstairs if their is a dubious pass. As for the touch judges, what a waste of time. Oh and Paddy O’Brien, telling us kiwis to grow up and stop blaming the ref. Ther fact is the ref made mistakes and that cost us the game. Obviously sipping champers with all the other fish-heads at IRB headquarters has taken its toll.

11 10 2007
Aimee

First off- Mike:
I don’t quite understand why you feel the need to criticise fans who are understandably upset, and are simply looking for a forum in which to express their grief and frustration. And believe me, professional rugby players the world over are “intelligent” enough to know how and when to kick a drop goal.

Barnes deserves the bad rap., not so much for the forward pass and the questionable binning of McAlister, which were mistakes, but ones that routinely occur in Rugby, but for his overall attitude towards reffing.

It is generally assumed that in a game of Rugby, the attacking side is given the advantage. Barnes’ failure to penalise the French at all in the second half was crucial. With the French making so many tackles in their 22, I defy anyone to say there were not repeated infringements.

That being said, Barnes does not deserve the blame for the loss. There should be career ramifications for him, but the All Blacks should have pulled through. Keeping the ball in the forwards with pick and drives was a losing strategy, rendering the dynamism of the back line redundant.

This was certainly a loss of nerve and lack of leadership. After the game, Sivuvatu said that the game was a blur, and that he could not remember it. I think perhaps that fans and the media have put too much pressure on the team. What else can explain the fact that despite being the number 1 team in the world, they continue to lose the most crucial games? So much posturing puts the team under huge pressure, and gives the other team a huge psychological advantage, as they can feel as though they are facing a grand, impossible task and have nothing to lose. The fact is, in sport, as we have seen this weekend, nothing is certain, and we should all stop acting like it is.

11 10 2007
withmalice

Nicely put Aimee…

12 10 2007
mzwami

Ag shame boyz what are you’s so upset about. This is all karma, your little refs do the boks in every year. Now how does it feel to be cheated, not noce huh?

Remember Sydney, remember the boks losing 49 – 0 to an Aussie pack that could scrum less than they can now, remember every scrum penalty going against the Boks even when they were going forward?

Remember the Ref?

We’ve been complaining for years but no-one listens!
There was 6 high shots on SA players this weekend only 1 guy got a penalty against him and one was sited who got a 1 game suspension and Schalk was initially banned for 4 weeks, by an Aussie!

Now I think this is just karma biting you lads from down under in a place I’d not want to be bitten either.

So take it like a man and next year when your refs are doing their utmost to do us in just remember, Karma is a bitch and you never know when she’s gonna rear her ugly head

12 10 2007
bob

Shh don’t tell anyone but I think mzwami has found out about the rest of the world’s secret agenda to keep the Boks down by making sure every ref has it in for them.

12 10 2007
WithMalice

lol! mzwami – that made me laugh! (I assume it was all tongue-in-cheek!)…
Man, asserting that the ‘Boks are hard done by, wow, tears rollin’ down my face! My stomach hurts from laughing!

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