Tri Nations Final to be Called by Johnathan Caplan—Oh No!

jim FaulknerCorrespondent ISeptember 12, 2008

Is it just me, or does someone else also think Johnathon Caplan is a terrible referee?

On the eve of one of the most anticipated clashes of the year, I have just found out that Caplan is the referee in the Tri Nations decider.

With international rugby becoming more and more exciting these days, with the ELV's opening the game up and making it faster, and the three teams in the tri nations so close, surely we can demand a better standard of referee than Caplan. Surely we can find a Kiwi or an Aussie ref that can leave any bias behind and do a better job than this strange little man.

Thank god George Gregan is not playing, if he was, the Aussies would get punished for just running on the field. I don't have the exact figure, but at one stage when Gregan played for the Brumbies, and Caplan was the ref, they lost something like 14 and won three. This mainly in a time when the Brumbies rarely lost.

Surely even New Zealanders must remember the Bletisloe clash when Caplan let (his ego and) the game go six minutes after full time, the All Blacks ended up giving a penalty away, which John Eales converted and won the Bletisloe cup.

I hate blaming referee's for ruining matches, but lets face it, in our great game of rugby, referees do ruin the odd match. Johnathon Caplan more than most. Closely followed by Mark Lawrence I must say.

With our games improving dramatically, I think the NZRU and the ARU should stand up and demand some decent referees for these big games.

Proper training and clear guild lines for the rules of the game should be demanded of these men. They all have different interpretations of the laws. At least most are some what consistent. Caplans interpretations can change several times in a match, and thats just not good enouph.

I'd just like to say best of luck to both teams before Saturdays hit out for the Tri Nations decider, and I sincerely hope Caplan has a good game, keeps his ego in check, and doesn't ruin another great game.