Sunday, June 28, 2009

Test Travesty

This was one that got away. If only, if only, if only. If only the French referee Christophe Berdos had the moral courage to give a red card to Berger for the most blatant piece of eye gouging I've ever seen in a rugby match. (By the way, contrast the lack of repeat showing of the incident by SA TV with Sky's public hanging of Alan Quinlan in the Heineken Cup.) If only the TV replay had given a clearer view of the scorer's trailing leg for SA's marginal last try. If only Ronan O'Gara had jumped for that fateful ball like a man rather than backing into it with eyes closed like a big girl. (OK, OK, the sun may have blinded him.)

But you know beyond all this lies the thought that SA are that bit more brutal and just don't countenance losing. They take physical commitment to a level that our boys just will not entertain - and rightly so. The SA attitude is encapsulated in their coach's refusal to see anything wrong in Berger's actions. He will be suspended, I suspect for a very long time, but that's too late for the Lions.