Springbok anchor Frans Malherbe says success or failure in the scrum can hinge purely on how well a team manages the referee.
Chatting on the ‘The Roar’ podcast, the 46-cap Bok and Stormers tighthead prop explained how he speaks with referees regarding the nitty gritties of the set piece.
Malherbe says the communication helps him address any issues in the engine room.
“If you chat to a ref before the game and he tells you, ‘Listen, watch out for this’ or, ‘Don’t do that, the other team complained about this that you do’, then you say, ‘OK, I’ll fix it’,” Malherbe said.
“And then as you go, you ask him, ‘Are you happy with it?’, you know, 10, 20 minutes into the game after a few scrums.
“Or if there’s an issue he blows you for, and you fix it, and check in with him afterwards ‘Are you happy with it?’ or whatever. You will quickly understand if he’s not happy or if he’s happy!
“Obviously, if you talk and he communicates back to you that’s always a good sign, and obviously if he doesn’t blow you again then you’re in the mix, then it’s better.
“But then you also get those days when the guy is just not open to talking … and you just know it’s a day you’re gonna get nailed by the ref.”
The Stormers resume their home playoff bid in the Vodacom United Rugby Championship against Ospreys on Saturday, 21 May in Wales.
— Harry Jones (@haribaldijones) May 10, 2022
— Harry Jones (@haribaldijones) May 10, 202
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