Wasps have responded to their controversial loss to Connacht by further criticising officials and congratulating Connacht on their win.
European Professional Club Rugby yesterday revealed that Connacht’s last minute winning try in their Champions Cup pool game with Wasps should not have stood.
Connacht secured a famous win thanks to a last-minute try from a maul by debutant back row Naulia Dawai that was converted by Jack Carty, but the EPCR confirmed in a statement that the try should not have stood as a result of a mistake by the replacement referee.
Jerome Garces was forced to leave the field as a result of a hamstring problem with his assistant taking over. The new referee allowed Connacht to take a lineout despite the time being up, which resulted in the winning try.
Here’s the EPCR statement in full:
EPCR would like to clarify an issue arising from yesterday’s European Rugby Champions Cup, Round 4 match between Connacht Rugby and Wasps at The Sportsground.
The assistant referee, who had taken over as match referee following an injury to Jerome Garces, awarded a penalty to Connacht after time had elapsed. Connacht kicked the ball into touch and from the resultant line-out, scored a converted try to win the game 20-18.
However, as time had elapsed, Connacht should not have been permitted to take a line-out throw-in once the ball had been kicked into touch as stipulated in Law 5.7 (e) of World Rugby’s Laws of the Game.
EPCR would like to thank all parties for their understanding and would also like to confirm that the result of the Pool 2 match stands.
Wasps have now issued the following response to EPCR’s statement yesterday, which clarified that a mistake was made by match officials in Wasps’ game against Connacht on Saturday, when Connacht were allowed to take a lineout after time had elapsed, that resulted in the winning try:
Wasps’ pitchside officials immediately stressed to the 4th official that Connacht could not take the lineout, as the referee had indicated time had gone beyond 80 minutes. Wasps’ players on the pitch also emphasised to the referee that time was up. Despite several protests, the lineout was still allowed to be taken.
We all understand referees are only human and mistakes do occasionally happen. However, for a referee and 4th official to get the laws of the game wrong at a crucial stage of a big match is hugely disappointing. The error made could have serious repercussions in terms of Wasps’ qualification hopes or the prospect of securing a home quarter final.
EPCR have stated that the result stands. We congratulate Connacht after a hard fought contest and we will now move on to the final rounds, after tough Premiership games against Bath, Newcastle and Leicester Tigers.