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Two words that might land Joe Marler in hot water

By Paul Smith
(Photo by David Rogers/The RFU Collection via Getty Images)

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England prop Joe Marler has risked landing himself in disciplinary hot water through social media posts issued on Sunday afternoon.

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The 31-year-old loose head, who is renowned for his to-the-point Twitter comments, posted “incompetent nobs” within seconds of his Harlequins teammate Dino Lamb being sent to the sin bin during their Gallagher Premiership derby defeat by Saracens.

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Andy Powell – the funniest man in rugby
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The second row received a yellow card following the intervention of TMO Andrew Jackson who asked referee Craig Maxwell-Keys to review a ruck clear-out which the pair subsequently deemed dangerous.

Marler is currently with the England squad preparing for next Saturday’s Autumn International Series opener against Tonga and was not therefore involved with the London derby.

A number of his 120,000 followers immediately latched on to the comment and interpreted it as being aimed at Craig Maxwell-Keys and his officiating team.

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In particular questions were raised regarding the TMO seeming to overrule the referee.

One wrote: “I thought the TMO was to highlight incidences that were missed by the referee so the referee can look at and then make a decision. Or look back to see if there was foul play. Why is the TMO now telling the ref what the sanction should be??”

Marler neither confirmed nor denied their assumption before three hours later adding a second Tweet consisting of a broken (and presumably therefore incompetent) door knob.

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One of his followers immediately noted this and commented on his thinking in making the updated post.

He tweeted: “Expertly avoiding the inevitable four-week ban there. Props to you.”

And in similar vein a second responded:

“Perhaps he is talking about his team mates in a banter way? He leaves them for a week and look what happens…and that my Lord is my client’s explanation to the events that lead up to this citing.”

One of Marler’s followers took issue with his post, asking how he would feel about players being spoken to in the same manner.

“Like screaming at a player who drops a ball or misses a tackle and telling them they are incompetent idiots. Show some respect and demonstrate rugby values. Being a ref and making decisions does not make it OK to be called names,” he wrote.

This comes at a time when referee societies across the UK are struggling for numbers as the recreational game resumes following the missed 2020/21 season.

Typical of this is the Cumbrian Society who have this weekend drawn attention to their plight following a social media post from one of their officials who experienced abuse during a match.

This Tweet received support from former National League officials Darren Gamage and Clare Daniels.

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