'Poite's decision was detrimental' - Peters
IRB issued a statement on Sunday saying Romain Poite had incorrectly issued the yellow card.
JOHANNESBURG - South Africa New Zealand Australia Rugby (Sanzar) chief executive Greg Peters has told Eyewitness News Romain Poite's decision to issue Springbok hooker Bismarck du Plessis a yellow card for a legal tackle was "detrimental" to the competition.
This comes after the International Rugby Board (IRB) issued a statement on Sunday saying that French referee Romain Poite had incorrectly issued the Springbok hooker a yellow card for a tackle on flyhalf Dan Carter.
Du Plessis was shown a red card in the 42nd minute for a second yellow card offence after he was deemed to have led with an elbow in striking flank Liam Messam in the neck.
All referees are appointed by the IRB and not by the Southern Hemisphere body, but Peters conceded that what transpired at Eden Park was detrimental to an eagerly awaited test match and the competition.
"So we were as concerned as anyone else was on the weekend. It is a very disappointing set of circumstances, and we acknowledge and applaud the IRB for coming out and admitting that an error was made. But unfortunately that doesn't change what happened on the field and the subsequent red card for [Bismarck] du Plessis."
Referees have been given even more power in the last fortnight as they are now able to request replays on the big screen to assist in their decisions. It's something that Peters says that Poite should have done as a matter of course.
"So, it's a very disappointing set of circumstances, particularly when you consider that we've now made available to match officials the use of big screen and video technology so they can actually see the footage before making decisions."
The IRB's statement on Sunday is virtually unprecedented and Peters said Sanzar raised their concerns with the game's governing body prior to the statement's release.
"Within Sanzar, we are particularly keen not to shy away from mistakes being made. We want people to own up and say a mistake has been made and we've done that through Super Rugby. And as I said, we applaud the IRB for doing that in this instance here because that would be a first- I don't recall that happening in the past and certainly our way of doing things has influenced that statement I'm sure."
Peters said the steps taken by the IRB though are highly unusual and will now place Poite under enormous scrutiny in future.
"He isn't appointed to any of the remaining Rugby Championship fixtures for the remainder of this year. The IRB appointments for the next round of internationals in November haven't been made yet and as with every referee, every performance and mistakes made is reflected in future appointments."