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Jones mulls boycott of 'waste of time' referee meetings

By AFP
media Eddie Jones says he might not attend another meeting of World Rugby referees AFP

England coach Eddie Jones has said meetings with World Rugby referees are "a waste of time" following the controversy over Sam Underhill's disallowed try against New Zealand.

England thought they had achieved a rare victory over the world champion All Blacks at Twickenham on Saturday when flanker Underhill crossed following a Courtney Lawes charge-down of TJ Perenara's kick.

Experienced referee Jerome Garces awarded the try but, after consulting Marius Jonker, the television match official, the Frenchman changed his decision after the South African highlighted an offside.

It remains a subject of debate whether Lawes was in fact offside.

But either way, Jonker's ruling was a marginal call and appeared to go against a World Rugby directive requiring "compelling evidence" for a TMO to overturn an onfield ruling.

England's frustration in a match they eventually lost 16-15 was compounded by the knowledge the decision to disallow Underhill's try came just days after a World Rugby meeting of leading coaches and referees in London had seemingly clarified the position regarding the TMO's involvement.

"I don't think I'll go to another referees' meeting in my life. It's a waste of time," said Jones.

"The referees have a tough job, tough decisions to make, and all we want in rugby is consistency in decision-making," the Australian added.

"We are happy to take every decision they make. But if we have policies then we have to follow them.

"If we don't follow them, then what is the point in being involved in those policies and decision making?"

Jones, whose England side face Japan -- whom he coached before taking over as Red Rose boss -- at Twickenham this coming Saturday, added: "I would rather just accept it and get on with it.

"That's the way it goes, you either get the rub of the green or you don't. I don't have any sour grapes at all about the game," insisted Jones.

"You win some, you lose some, and get on with it. But there is something wrong, somewhere."

 
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