- Apr 9, 2010
- Country Flag
- Club or Nation
There is a bit of contradiction in this remark.Not for 40 years. And I do appreciate the game has changed a great deal since then especially the big bang in 1995 of professionalism. I also appreciate that players, refs and spectators (and of course pundits) will all see the game from different perspectives and have different agendas.
There are many conflicting ideals that come to the fore on this site and the overriding one with respect to Rugby Union in general is that it must be both watchable and entertaining; hence the seemingly overwhelming attitude to see as many tries scored in a game as possible; supported by the inducements firstly of more points per try and bonus points for 4 or more tries. And with the requirement to be entertaining then this element can only be judged by those watching the game itself. So where it is welcomed to hear from a players perspective it is the spectators who need to be satisfied (for want of a better phrase). Its ok for the ref to give a running commentary but his commands/warnings/directions coupled with the need to see more tries run in are eating further into the natural game and the worry is it will lose a lot of its appeal due to the artificial elements that are being imposed. Please dont get me wrong. We all love to see a try scored. But as a result well worked and well taken drop goals (which have won world cups in the past) are going out of fashion in that quest for that 4th try and elusive bonus point. It's just my opinion but the game is changing (not for the better) and this is not being helped by the referees commentary.
But I think the main issue here is that you are putting way too much blame on the referees and not on other factors of the modern game.
Let's take drop goals as an example. The reason we see less drop goals, is because players don't practice it as much as in the past, and some players don't want to take the risk of attempting the drop goal when there is a possibility to score tries. But with that said, in South Africa, the drop goal is still a very good weapon, and it's still seen a lot. Just this past weekend, during the warm-ups for the rainbow cup, the Cheetahs fullback made a drop goal from his own half. The referee had no influence whatsoever in him taking the chance.