Sanzaar referees boss Lyndon Bray says All Blacks centre Ryan Crotty scored a legitimate try against the Springboks at Newlands on Saturday.
In the 32nd minute of the match, Bok flyhalf Elton Jantjies had a kick charged down by opposite number Beauden Barrett, who booted the ball ahead. It bounced off Bok centre Jesse Kriel close to the line and Crotty dived on to it in the in-goal area.
The All Blacks centre appeared to lose control of the ball while attempting to ground it, but after watching several replays, the TMO, England’s Rowan Kitt, told French referee Jérôme Garcès to award the try that gave the visitors an 8-3 lead.
Bray told SuperSport.com that it was the correct decision.
‘Crotty was not carrying the ball so there was no loss of control or knock-on at that point,’ he said. ‘Therefore the next issue to consider is if he propelled the ball forward trying to ground it.
‘When he first made contact with ball, the ball was not at first in contact with the ground, and it appears the ball movement was straight down and not forward.
‘If it was determined he had insufficient downward pressure it was still not a knock on. Then his momentum meant his upper body forced the ball and under law this is a try.’
However, SuperSport rugby analyst Nick Mallett said on Saturday evening that SA Rugby referees boss Mark Lawrence had told him that the try should not have been awarded.
‘His ruling is that once you have possession, even just touching the ball when it’s in the air, you are deemed to have control of possession,’ said Mallett.
‘Crotty does lose possession, then it goes to ground and his stomach hits the ball. So according to Lawrence that ball was lost forward and should have been a scrum-down and not a try.’
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