Hansen: ABs get away with less

New Zealand coach Steve Hansen has openly defended his side’s disciplinary record and reckons the All Blacks ‘get our share and more’ from the referees.

During their 21-9 victory over Ireland in Dublin at the weekend, which was some form of ‘revenge’ for the surprise 40-29 loss suffered to the same opponents in Chicago a fortnight before, two All Black players were yellow-carded. It should have been more, screamed the Irish media.

Not so, Hansen told the New Zealand Herald.

‘I read somewhere that referees treat us differently to everyone else,’ he commented. ‘But we come out higher on the penalty count most weeks, so they are probably right, but not in the way they think they are.

‘A lot of people feel that we get away with stuff from the referees, but I totally disagree with that. I think we get our share, if not more, and I think there is a perception that says look at the All Blacks and not the other team.'

Malakai Fekitoa was been handed a one-match ban after the Ireland Test, while Sam Cane was cleared of wrongdoing. Fekitoa will not be available to play against France after being told at a disciplinary hearing that his high tackle on Simon Zebo should have been a red and not a yellow card.

As a result, Fekitoa was handed a two-week suspension, which has been reduced to one on account of his previously good disciplinary record and immediate acknowledgement on the field that he'd transgressed.

Photo: David Rogers/Getty Images

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Mariette Adams