All Black legend says TMOs ruining rugby
He was one of the most exciting players on the pitch, but now rugby legend Carlos Spencer is concerned that excitement is draining from the game.
Spencer’s over-reliance on the TV Game Official after the game was unsatisfied with the game, a sentiment shared by many fans, pundits and players.
World Rugby has come under heavy criticism after the World Cup final which saw a number of interferences upstairs, most notably Aaron Smith’s try which was ruled out despite TMO Tom Foley overstepping his jurisdiction to do so .
There were many delays in the game in relation to the championship itself due to constant delegation between the executive teams.
According to reports, World Rugby acknowledged the errors made in the final, which the Springboks won 12-11 and apologized to the All Blacks.
Spencer said the impact of technology was not setting the game for a bright future.
“It’s disappointing when the games come to what they are, and obviously there’s been a lot of talk around TMOs, you know, ruining the game. I probably have to agree to be honest.”
Spencer led three of the most exciting teams in rugby history – the ’96, ’97 and ’03 Blues.
He won three Super Rugby titles and earned 44 All Black tries.
Known as “The King,” Spencer dazzled onlookers with his banana kicks, flawless flick passes and searing speed.
However, he admitted that the game has changed significantly since his time.
Now that he is coaching Blues Aupiki, Spencer said that the referees must be given as much responsibility as possible.
“If we look at that World Cup final, I thought the TMO had too much influence on the game. The referee is there for a reason.”
Many prominent rugby icons have spoken out about referees being underpowered and damaging the flow of the game, including whistleblower Nigel Owens.
“We have to be aware of where the game is going around these TMO’s and our referees. I think the way it’s going at the moment is that you’re not putting their game, it’s I think there’s a bright future for the young kids who want to do it. Play the game.”
An innovator on the field, Spencer hoped the powers that be could be bold enough to help save rugby from the clutches of the bunker.
“We want to make the game as exciting as possible and I think we’ve lost that over the years.”
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