Alan Quinlan Has An Interesting Take On That Controversial Lions Penalty Reversal

Two very different approaches.

Over the years All Blacks captains have become known for getting in the ear of the referee. Richie McCaw was an absolute master at it, and more often than not it worked to New Zealand’s advantage.

Sometimes however, being overly vocal can have a knock-on effect and Alan Quinlan thinks that is exactly what happened in the series decider between the All Blacks and Lions on Saturday in Auckland.

Quinlan had his ‘ref link’ in for the duration of the match and noted that Read was very vocal throughout the game, Warburton in contrast was not. The Lions captain however saved his chance to challenge the ref when it mattered most.

After initially making the correct call, Poite changed his mind because he had time to think about his decision. For me, the magnitude of the occasion got to him. He backed out of it, no two ways about it.” Quinlan wrote in The Independent
It’s certainly not black and white, but the Lions were very lucky to get away with it. Poite made the decision to give the penalty, which was the correct one but the Lions players put him under pressure to look at Kieran Read’s challenge in the air.
Sam Warburton asked Poite to check for accidental offside – it was an excellent piece of captaining.
I had the ‘ref link’ and it was amazing to listen to the difference in the rival captains’ approach over the game. Read was constantly in Poite’s face questioning decisions and asking him to double-check stuff. Warburton didn’t do that at all but it was arguably more effective because the crucial decision went in his side’s favour at the death.

An interesting take. He could very well be right.

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