'It's frightening that the same official is doing England v Wales'
Scottish referee Mike Adamson ignited a social media inferno over his controversial handling of Friday night’s Heineken Champions Cup match between Harlequins and Castres, fuelling fears that he could be found wanting when he referees next month’s Guinness Six Nations match between England and Wales at Twickenham on February 26.
Castres lost out 36-33 at The Stoop, Alex Dombrandt’s try with the clock heavily in the red proving decisive in clinching the Gallagher Premiership champions the win that saw them finish second in Pool B of the Champions Cup and eliminate their French visitors in the process.
Adamson initially gave an on-field decision of ‘no try’ but he eventually awarded the score even though the video evidence that was reviewed wasn’t one hundred per cent conclusive that a try had definitely been scored.
The review, though, wouldn’t have been necessary if the referee hadn’t made some glaring errors in the preceding minutes during the build-up, such as incorrectly awarding a penalty against Castres when they appeared to have won a legitimate breakdown turnover while there were other incidents such as a forward pass getting missed.
It capped an unconvincing performance that was heavily criticised on Twitter and led to accusations that Adamson – whose red-carding of Munster’s Simon Zebo in another match earlier this month was deemed to be incorrect and subsequently overturned by a disciplinary hearing committee – will be out of his depth next month refereeing at Test level.
Referee for Quins v Castres was alarmingly poor, Castres may as well not have bothered coming. It is frightening that the same official, Mike Adamson is doing England v Wales. AND France v Italy. How can that be when Wayne Barnes only has one game?
— Stephen Jones (@stephenjones9) January 21, 2022
It was last year when the official took charge of England’s win over Italy, an appointment that was the first time since 2002 that a referee from Scotland had taken charge of a Six Nations match. Adamson is now one of only two referees – the other is South Africa’s Jaco Peyper – who have been given two games to referee in the 2022 Six Nations, the Scot taking charge of England versus Wales in London 20 days after starting with France versus Italy in Paris on February 6.
After what unfolded at Harlequins, though, there are questions surrounding the capabilities of the ex-Scotland 7s player on the whistle. Stephen Jones, The Sunday Times rugby correspondent, tweeted: “Referee for Quins v Castres was alarmingly poor, Castres may as well not have bothered coming.
“It is frightening that the same official, Mike Adamson, is doing England v Wales. AND France v Italy. How can that be when Wayne Barnes only has one game?”
Ex-England out-half Andy Goode posted: “Got to feel for Castres, some horrific decisions have gone against them there”, a take on the refereeing performance that drew a response from Eddie O’Sullivan, the former Ireland coach.
“Keep in mind the shocking forward pass in the lead up to the 1st Pen. People wonder why coaches get so upset with referees. Most frustrating part is there are zero consequences for Mike Adamson. He is promoted to the 6 Nations despite his performance.”
Keep in mind the shocking forward pass in the lead up to the 1st Pen. People wonder why coaches get so upset with referees. Most frustrating part is there are zero consequences for Mike Adamson. He is promoted to the 6 Nations despite his performance. https://t.co/ZK9A1Pqn3w
— Eddie O'Sullivan (@TheRealEddieOS) January 21, 2022
Not a lot of love for Mike Adamson on here tonight
Didn’t see Harlequins vs Castres – what’s happened?? pic.twitter.com/mS8nyeNvOv
— Gav Harper (@Gav_S_Harper) January 21, 2022
Rugby twitter dominated by referee Mike Adamson had a poor match.
This is not the first time.
He will be refereeing 6 Nations matches. World Rugby seemingly want him at the World Cup.
Top referee? Twitter responses say no.
French speaker? No.
Spanish speaker? No.
— Paul Tait (@AmericasOval) January 21, 2022
His TMO tonight has got the same gig as well. Both of them have form for the sort of debacle witnessed tonight sadly. Those final few mins were very predictable with that duo involved.
— John Pearce ??????? (@JPearce_JP) January 21, 2022
Quins have ref Mike Adamson to thank more than anybody for a home quarter-final (should they get there). That was as disgraceful a display in the final quarter by a ref as you will see. Castres well and truly hard done by.
Consistently one of the very worst referees around.
— Michael Cantillon (@mike_cantillon) January 21, 2022
Naw. To be fair it should say:
Mike Adamson. That’s the tweet. That’s it. https://t.co/Uissl1kUSE
— Clare Molloy (@ClareeMolloy) January 21, 2022
If Toulouse think they were hard done by in the Cardiff decision, well, f*** me, they owe Mike Adamson several crates of wine. That was utterly fucking dreadful.
— Alan Cavanagh (@alancav) January 21, 2022
There’s too much flak directed at Mike Adamson. Ok, he’s not perfect but he’s doing ok imo! Wayne Barnes had a few shockers when he started out. Nigel Owens had some too! Both are/were great refs! Give the lad a break! Seems to me that some commentators are a touch harsh on him?
— James Lindsay (@jameswl8) January 21, 2022
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