Owen Farrell is the subject of debate yet again online after the England centre appeared to get away with a hit that left both he and his intended target, Italy’s Stephen Varney, clutching their heads.

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The incident occurred just before Anthony Watson’s intercept try in the 54th minute, when TMO Joy Neville requested a review of a contact in the lead up to the try. Both players were left on the ground, with head to had contact having clearly been made.

However, having reviewed the footage, referee Mike Adamson adjudged that it had been a chest to chest contact.

Officials also appeared to ignore that the contact appeared to be clearly late, Farrell colliding with Varney well after he had passed the ball.

“That’s a late hit on a player with his back turned from Farrell, James Gaskell got binned for Wasps for similar last week, consistency?!,” wrote Andy Goode.

“It appears Owen Farrell’s head is not in contact with Varney’s despite him immediately holding it after the late hit! Strange call from officials. Farrell a lucky lad.”

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“Think that’s a terrible call. The problem isn’t a high shot or shoulder charge. It’s a late hit. Faz accelerates into Varney after he’s passed the ball. There’s no prior commitment. The goal here is to put in a cheap shot and take Varney out. It worked a treat.”

There were plenty more in that vein:

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