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'Lame penalty': Fans erupt over refereeing calls as tensions ride high between All Blacks and Pumas

By Online Editors
(Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

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A week after the red card controversy of Bledisloe IV, the officiating of an All Blacks test is again in the spotlight with referee Angus Gardner criticised on social media for his stringent ruling of New Zealand’s Tri-Nations test against Argentina.


In a shock first half that has seen the Pumas take a 16-3 lead into half-time, Gardner has been the subject of plenty of attention on Twitter following some officiating calls that many social media users appear to disagree with.

An early boil over of tension from both sides in the first few minutes saw Gardner dish out some stern words to both sets of captains in a bid to reduce the niggle.

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However, that eventually became a constant theme throughout the opening stanza, with Gardner forced to issue a formal warning to Sam Cane and his side as the likes of Shannon Frizell ceded to Argentina’s confrontational style of play by engaging in scuffles.

Dane Coles followed in Frizell’s footsteps towards the end of the half, giving away a needless penalty for a slap in the face of a Pumas player, which led to Gardner overturning a penalty that was originally awarded to the All Blacks.

Many questioned that call was warranted, but the criticism went up a notch when Gardner handed Argentina a penalty for what he regarded to be a no-arms tackle by Jordie Barrett on fullback Santiago Carreras as he made a clearing kick.

Given Barrett was attempting a charge down, the right wing had little time to pull out, leading him to collide with Carreras after missing the ball.


Unlike last week, no cards were dished out as a result, but Twitter users were sure to make their opinions heard online.



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