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Dublin: 12 °C Wednesday 25 April, 2018

'We all know what should have happened' - Hansen refuses to criticise Poite

Romain Poite made a huge call in the endgame between the Lions and All Blacks.

Murray Kinsella reports from Eden Park 

ALL BLACKS BOSS Steve Hansen refused to directly criticise referee Romain Poite after the Frenchman’s controversial decision to change a late penalty call against the Lions in their 15-15 draw at Eden Park.

The big moment came directly from the restart after Owen Farrell had levelled the game with only two minutes remaining.

Ken Owens speaks with Romain Poite before he awarded an accidental offside Source: James Crombie/INPHO

Liam Williams knocked the ball on in the air and Ken Owens briefly caught it in a position that appeared to be ahead of the Lions fullback.

Poite signalled for a penalty immediately, but then opted to go to a TMO review and eventually changed his call to a scrum against the Lions, stating that Owens had accidentally played the ball.

The All Blacks are likely to be livid internally, but Hansen held back from directly criticising Poite post-match.

“It’s a tough game to ref,” said Hansen. “We all know what should have happened but, at the end of the day, it’s a game. As little kids we’re taught to accept the good with the bad and that’s what we’re doing here.”

Hansen then stated that he would not speak about the decision any further.

“I’m not going to talk about it, the ref made his decision and we’re going to live with it.”

But the All Blacks coach continued to field questions around Poite’s huge call and was asked if the law itself was the issue.

“Go back to the World Cup and the same thing happened where Scotland missed out [on a semi-final], because they didn’t use the video,” said Hansen. “This time they had a video and a pow-wow.

“His initial instincts were that it was a penalty and then he spoke to his team of three and one of them suggested it was accidental.

“If we had scored another try ourselves, we wouldn’t be talking about this. We’ll look at the things we can control.

“There’s too many avenues that you can go down. That’s not the ref’s fault, that’s the lawbook’s fault. The people in charge of the game need to look at it.”

When would Hansen like to see a change?

“Tomorrow would be great.”

Source: The42 Rugby Show/SoundCloud

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