Heinz Schenk
2 minute read
26 Feb 2019
2:28 pm

Egon’s errant whistle stumped both Stormers and Lions, says Dobbo

Heinz Schenk

The Stormers assistant coach admits the much-criticised referee was under immense pressure at Newlands last weekend.

John Dobson during the DHL Stormers training session at High Performance Centre on February 18, 2019 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo by Grant Pitcher/Gallo Images)

Never shy of speaking his mind, Stormers assistant coach has intimated that the Capetonians probably were fortunate to be on the right end of Egon Seconds’ whistle in the dying moments of last weekend’s derby win over the Lions.

Various observers – most prominently former Bok coach Nick Mallett – pointed out how Malcolm Marx was penalised in the 77th minute for a legitimate steal at the breakdown, partly because Seconds was unsighted  and his assistant seemingly didn’t want to make the call.

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As a result, the Stormers won a penalty and applied enough pressure for replacement scrumhalf Hershel Jantjies to score the winning try.

Dobson believes both sides had reason to question Seconds’ performance.

“Whoever lost that game would’ve had a reason to feel aggrieved, whether it was over the result or the officiating,” he said.

“There was a lot of pressure on the referee towards the back end of the game. Both teams probably had cases. We had one or two calls that bothered us, but those decisions weren’t as seismic in terms of timing during the game.”

While praising the players for their character and sharpness on defence and at the breakdowns, Dobson also admitted that Jantjies’ late show-stopper was the Stormers merely taking advantage of a bit of luck.

“That’s the brutality of rugby. In the last scrum, the ball came spurting out. Scarra (Ntubeni) hooked the feed so hard that he hits Jaco Coetzee, who pulls out. Had that not happened and the Lions kept us out, everyone would be talking about another Stormers loss,” he said.

“But because that ball flew out and Hershel took advantage of a sudden wonderful opportunity.”

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