World Rugby slammed the standard of referees at the World Cup on Tuesday after so much complaints in the tournament’s openings. Rugby governing body admitted that there had been “initial challenges” with the implementation of technology and communications between match officials at the tournament.
“Following the usual review of matches, the match officials team recognize that performances over the opening weekend of Rugby World Cup 2019 were not consistently of the standards set by World Rugby and themselves,” Rugby officials said in a statement.
“But World Rugby is confident of the highest standards of officiating moving forward.”
The officials have failed to capture several incidents, and most of such incidents were capture by observers and shared widely on social media, since the tournament kicked off on Friday.
For instance, Reece Hodge’s apparent high shot on Fiji’s Peceli Yato slipped off at the time of the game, though the Australia wing was later cited and will face a disciplinary hearing on Wednesday.
Next, the footage of All Blacks captain Kieran Read’s head-high, off-the-ball tackle on Springboks’ Pieter-Steph du Toit, went down unseen by officials, however, it was seen by unofficial and has also drawn much disturbing comments online.
There’s also the case of Louis Picamoles who clearly appeared offside when he made an important interception in France’s narrow 23-21 victory against Argentina, whose coach later fought the officials.
“Elite match officials are required to make decisions in complex, high-pressure situations and there have been initial challenges with the use of technology and team communication, which have impacted decision-making,” World Rugby said.
“These are already being addressed by the team of 23 match officials to enhance consistency. Given this proactive approach, a strong team ethic and a superb support structure, World Rugby has every confidence in the team.”
Rugby referees reviews activities on the field with the help of a Television Match Official (TMO), that replays the action in slow-motion from several different angles to avoid oversight.