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Cryptic Erasmus tweet about the tackle that left Adams needing HIA

By Liam Heagney
(Photo by Warren Little/Getty Images)

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Springboks World Cup winner Rassie Erasmus has ended his recent Twitter hibernation by posting twice about last Saturday’s late-game crosskick by Dan Biggar to Josh Adams, cryptically claiming the footage from Twickenham highlighted how difficult a team Wales are to beat. The South African director of rugby is back at work in recent weeks following the two-month ban from all rugby activity imposed on him in November by World Rugby. 

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He was pencilled in to hold his first media briefing on Tuesday since his suspension, joining Lynne Cantwell, the South African women’s high-performance manager, on a virtual media conference call to discuss the plans and programme for the Springboks women and Springboks women’s sevens teams for 2022, as well as the landscape of the provincial women’s game in the country.

Erasmus, though, popped his head above the parapet before that media commitment to comment on an incident near the end of last Saturday’s Guinness Six Nations round three game in London which England won 23-19 against Wales. 

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The initial 15-second clip showed Biggar in the middle of the pitch inside his team’s own half finding Adams with an ambitious 78th-minute crosskick as they sought to chase down the margin which at that stage was 23-12.  

“In my opinion, this is what makes Wales always a difficult team to beat!! Dan Biggar has the BMT in the 77th min to kick the crosskick on the spot to Josh Adams! Well defended by England!”

Curiously, Erasmus slowed down the clip when England defender Joe Marchant clattered into Adams to try and put a stop to his carry. The Springboks boss then replied to his own tweet by posting a one-minute, 15-second post of the footage that included an analysis ring around Biggar as he kicked the ball and another analysis ring as Adams was tackled by Marchant.

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“This a better wider shot! Very tough to defend,” he wrote while he also tagged the Welsh Rugby Union and Agustin Pichot, the former World Rugby vice-chairman, in the tweet.

Adams was forced to leave the field for a head injury assessment when play was finally halted to award Wales a penalty for an infringement further up the field.

Erasmus made no comment about the injury sustained by the Welsh winger, but his cryptic inference could well have been that the Marchant tackle should have been reviewed by the TMO and checked to see whether it met the threshold for a red card to be brandished by the referee Mike Adamson.

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