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Sunday, August 01, 2010

The build up to the Drew Mitchell red card

The build up to the Drew Mitchell red card

Theres been a bit of confusion about the first yellow card issued to Drew Mitchell in the Wallabies 49-28 loss to the All Blacks this weekend. As discussed on the RD Facebook page earlier today, the reason for this is that a replay of the tackle was not shown on certain broadcasts. In this clip though you can see the tackle, as well as the lead up to the rare red card for a professional foul.

The Wallabies were down 32-14 then had to play the majority of the second half with just 14 men after Mitchell was given a second yellow card, resulting in a red, for preventing a quick lineout throw in from taking place.

He was initially sin binned for a late, no arms tackle on All Blacks captain Richie McCaw. It was spotted by both the tough judge and referee Craig Joubert, but play continued until the ball went dead, which is what led to things not being completely clear at first.

While he was off the park, both Australia and New Zealand infringed by preventing one another from taking quick taps from penalties. Joubert eventually chatted to the captains and gave them a general warning. Mitchell then returned two minutes into the second half, and paid the price for being the next player to infringe.

"Unfortunately the referee had given a general warning... but for a test match, it seemed a bit sort of out of kilter that you've lost one man because a player throws a ball away," said unhappy Australian rugby boss John O'Neill. "It's not as though he punched someone or it's a dangerous tackle. But you've got to live with it."

While ONeill, and of course many others, have criticised not only the Mitchell decisions, but the Owen Franks yellow for a shoulder charge as well, All Blacks coach Graham Henry accepted the firm stance.

"The referee's pretty tough but I think that's important you get a decent game of footy," he said. "If he is grey on the tackle area or grey on people throwing the ball away when the other side wants it then you've got a shambles on your hands.

"It's good that he's strict and he sticks to what he says he's got to do. You'd prefer a referee who's tough even if he goes over the top occasionally. That's better than someone who sits on the fence and doesn't rule," said Henry.

Mitchell was cited but cleared after the punishment he received was deemed sufficient.

If you're a Facebook user and haven't already 'liked' Rugbydump, do so now to make sure you get the latest updates from not only this website, but other interesting clips, news stories, and more. The big discussion for now is, was this red card harsh, or is everyone happy as long as the referees are consistent?

Time: 03:57

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