Cape Town – Former Springbok centre Brendan Venter says the All Blacks are notorious for pushing the legal boundaries in international rugby.
Venter, via a column on supersport.com, commented on this past weekend’s Rugby Championship Test between the Springboks and All Blacks at Ellis Park.
All Black skipper Richie McCaw scored a controversial try late in the game which proved the undoing of the Springboks.
The All Blacks ran a crafty lineout move close to the tryline which saw hooker Codie Taylor throw a low ball to McCaw, who joined the lineout from the scrumhalf position before catching the ball and barging over the line.
Former South African Test referee Jonathan Kaplan earlier this week said McCaw’s try was illegal– and Venter agrees.
“Richie McCaw’s match-winning try is an interesting talking point because the player who stands at scrumhalf has to be two metres back when the ball gets thrown in from the lineout,” Venter wrote.
“Moreover, the receiver is not permitted to be part of the lineout until the ball leaves the hands of the hooker. For McCaw to have received that ball, he would had to have been part of the lineout. As such, McCaw was standing in an illegal position and, by the letter of the law, the try should have been disallowed.”
According to Venter, the All Blacks often try to get away with illegal tactics.
“The All Blacks are notorious for pushing the boundaries on everything. Sometimes their ways are legal but very often their tactics are not. The All Blacks cheat subtly…”
Venter though expects referees to be wary of the All Blacks’ tactics at the Rugby World Cup later this year.
“It’s no coincidence that in big games, the All Blacks generally don’t get away with their surreptitious ploys because referees are more sensitive to the situation and better prepared having studied both teams. I believe the above tactics could count massively against the All Blacks during the World Cup.”
Venter, 45, played 17 Tests for the Springboks between 1994 and 1999.