Wednesday May 24, 2017 Romain Poite takes a low blow as Jannie Du Plessis sees red in Top 14 play-off

Romain Poite takes a low blow as Jannie Du Plessis sees red in Top 14 play-off
14
Comments

Last weekend’s Top 14 play-off between Racing 92 and Montpellier was a cracker that went right down to the wire, with Racing eventually coming out on top 22-13 in the south of France.

While the intensity was ramped up throughout am incredibly tight second half, there was at least some time for comic relief, when referee Romain Poite copped a blow to his lower regions.

Poite was clearly taken by surprise when the ball was returned to the field and in what was more a painful experience than a humorous one for the Frenchman, it was heartening to see players from both sides show concern.

But as we’ve come to expect from Poite, who has had his fair share of tumbles and incidents in the past, he was quick to put it behind him and continue with the game unfazed.

Racing ultimately proved too strong for Montpellier in the end and benefited from the sending off of Jannie du Plessis – for repeated strikes to the face of a Racing player – to wrap up victory with a final minute penalty from Dan Carrter.

Du Plessis, clearly agitated by Racing back-row Bernard Le Roux holding him in the ruck, struck out three times, landing punches to Le Roux’s head and face. Poite had no option but to send the South African prop off.

Romain Poite’s unfortunate incident

Du Plessis punches and red card

credit: rugbyotop

14 Comments

  •  drg
    drg

    His reaction is obviously born from frustration... But that still doesn't mean it's a wrong reaction. Frustration from being dominated is wrong, frustration from someone cheating in that manner is fair enough. 7 was off his feet and holding on...

    Reply
  •  mise
    mise

    eh hold on (!) that wasn't exactly a death grip now was it? I mean, he could have _easily_ got away...by stepping one step backwards. Or to his right. Ball was going that way anyway. Holding on is wrong but it happens all the time in a ruck, just less visibly. So its only kind of wrong. Punch or two to the holding arm and he's shown the ref the problem and avoided a card of any description most likely. He was a bit silly. This holding incident was wrong and should have been penalized, but he didn't deal with it well.

    Reply
  • I am sort of between views. Holding a player is annoying and more should be done, but he didn't need to hit him in the head. Simple to keep hitting an arm - it makes of point of showing he is held and also gets the players arm off. Just dumb to hit the head in this situation.

    Reply
  •  im1
    im1

    that's a fair point, but the issue with punshing someone holding on is, as you say, players will start throwing their hands in the air trying to get a penalty. And, as much as we think it may be fair that you should be able to batter the offending player, thats not really proportional. The thing with just bending a finger backward is that it gives the offending player the option to stop without any damage (I am of course suggesting if Jannie did pull a finger back, he should stop once he has been let go of). If Jannie really cared about getting away from the ruck quickly, as soon as the player lets go of him, he will let go himself surely?

    Reply
  •  drg
    drg

    Whilst you're right, why should Jannie have to even go looking for fingers to bend? Either he should be allowed to batter the player or the referee should penalise the player... However just think if Jannie had bent a finger and broken it, wouldn't that look far more deliberate and damning when it's reviewed later?

    Reply
  •  drg
    drg

    Exactly, if you were to watch this game like a sponge and absorb all it has to offer, one thing you're bound to take away is holding on equals a potential red for the opposition player and NO punishment for yourself (bar perhaps a few lumps).. It's pathetic!

    Reply
  •  finedisregard
    finedisregard

    Refs got this wrong. The Racing player is cheating not DuPlessis. So as a coach for youth rugby should I encourage kids to grab and hold players away from the breakdown? It seems as if players may do so with impunity these days. We must allow players some type of self-regulation.

    Reply
  •  vladimir
    vladimir

    Yeah, rugby players often have very bad technique when it comes to wrestling. The way they sometimes try to clear rucks through brute force is hilarious. But in a way, I wonder if it's not better they stay ignorant: with adrelanine pumping and their raw strenght, serious injuries could happen very fast.

    Reply
  •  im1
    im1

    you don't need to punch someone to stop them holding on. Just grab their little finger and pull it away hard. It is suprising how quickly they will let go.

    Reply
  •  vladimir
    vladimir

    What has become of the 'cynical play' penalty? I don't see it anymore, while it was quite effective back in the day.

    Reply
  •  katman
    katman

    Not condoning Jannie's slaps here (or maybe I am just a little), but if you're in the "red zone" - attacking from a ruck near the line - and you hang onto defenders to open up gaps around the ruck, then it should be an immediate penalty and yellow card. When we talk about cynical infringements, it always refers to the desperate defender trying to stop an otherwise certain try. But it doesn't get more cynical than holding defenders back near the try line.

    Reply
  •  drg
    drg

    The problem is, those in charge don't know which way they're going with the game... on one hand they want a sanitised game, but on the other they're not willing to make sensible rulings. I know in the past we've seen reds dished out for lashing out over holding on, Troncon, Grewcock, Johnson (I think it was a red for lashing out), however it's something that hasn't ever been well addressed. In days gone by you might have had a yellow for a punch provided it was a fair scuffle and it wasn't a bloody great KO haymaker...however these days it seems it's a clear red every time...which if that's the way they want to go, then I guess that's the way it is.. however you can't expect fairness if you are going to punish a reaction but not a cause.. As you said, if players were yellowed for holding on, we'd see more hands thrown into the air at every opportunity, which won't be attractive, but it would save your players from being sent off.. or alternatively they let players sort it out, in which case don't get upset when someone is laid out on live TV...

    Reply
  •  reality
    reality

    In this kind of situation I really wish that the offending player would land some absolute haymakers rather than crappy punches like this. At least the other guy would be taught a lesson, and the citing committees always look at the act rather than the intensity of the act. Also, it's absurd that only penalties are given for holding back opposition players. It's off-the-ball obstruction and should be a yellow card to discourage people from doing it. Otherwise the risk is practically non-existent, and it will cause opposing players to lash out.

    Reply
  •  drg
    drg

    Quite a satisfying combination of videos to watch in reverse actually.... Du Plessis getting sent off in a bullshit call, then Poite getting hit in the spuds as a result of that call...

    Reply

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Romain Poite takes a low blow as Jannie Du Plessis sees red in Top 14 play-off | RugbyDump