England's rugby coach whistles for two refs

Sports | 8 Nov 2018

England coach Eddie Jones believes a second referee could be rugby union's answer to dealing with the intensity of the game.

A much-needed win for the under-pressure Jones over South Africa last weekend ended in controversy when an injury-time tackle by Owen Farrell on Andre Esterhuizen was referred to the television match official by referee Angus Gardner. Eventually, Gardner decided against awarding the Springboks a kickable penalty so England held on for a 12-11 win.

"The game is getting more intense," Jones said. "All the data shows that. The game went for 100 minutes on the weekend with 39 minutes of ball in play. So there was 61 minutes where the players could recover, adding to the intensity of the hits, the quickness of the contact.

"We're asking one referee to do it the way they did it when blokes like me were playing - jogging around the field basically," Jones added. But administrators "may have to look at two referees on the field. They do it in rugby league in Australia."


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