Springboks: Nick Mallett blames Rassie Erasmus for South Africa getting ‘bad calls’

Nick Mallet and Rassie Erasmus image.jpg Credit: Alamy
Nick Mallet and Rassie Erasmus image.jpg Credit: Alamy

Former South Africa head coach Nick Mallett believes that Rassie Erasmus’ war against rugby officialdom has resulted in referees being harsher on the Springboks.

The Bok director of rugby first started his tirade last year when he produced an hour-long video picking apart Nic Berry’s performance in the first Test of the British and Irish Lions series.

World Rugby did not take too kindly to that outburst, banning Erasmus for two months from all rugby activities and then a further 10 months from matchday activities.

Taking to social media

It doesn’t appear the World Cup-winning coach has learned from that experience, taking to Twitter after the matches with Ireland and France to highlight refereeing decisions which he felt went against South Africa.

The governing body has duly taken action by suspending him for South Africa’s final Autumn Nations Series encounters against Italy and England.

“Unfortunately, I’m convinced that the reason we’re not getting good calls in those moments is because he keeps pointing them out and keeps on showing refereeing incompetence,” Mallett wrote in his Sport24 column.

“It goes right back to 2018 and that tackle on Andre Esterhuizen against England at Twickenham where, in the aftermath of that loss, Erasmus came out with a video sarcastically teaching Esterhuizen a new tackling technique, telling him he wasn’t going high enough.”

Mallett has urged Erasmus to stop his antics when he returns from his ban or else the 66-year-old believes the Springbok director of rugby will actually hamper the national team going forward.

War to be lost

“World Rugby has a whole list of instances where Rassie has expressed dissatisfaction through social media,” he added.

“If he continues to do this, I believe we are guaranteed to continue to get bad calls from referees. There is no question that the officials are aware of these tactics and trying to protect themselves.

“Why should they give an advantage to a team that has sought to embarrass them through their director of rugby?

“You might win a battle where South Africans think you are being funny or clever, but the war will be lost because, ultimately, you are doing more harm than good with this approach of constant criticism.”

READ MORE: Rassie Erasmus receives another suspension after latest criticism of referees

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