Jerome Garces’ performance in South Africa's 23-13 loss to New Zealand has received a large amount of attention online as fans continue to criticise his calls.
Although calls in a game tend to even out and it's accepted that some referees will make errors, the penalty count was hugely in favour of New Zealand.
The Frenchman gave 75% of the decisions in support of the All Blacks.
Garces has now taken charge of 14 games involving the Springboks - they have only won four, including zero victories over New Zealand when he takes the whistle.
Their opponents shared unhappiness on this occasion; the Kiwis also felt they had been mistreated at times, with captain Kieran Read apparently calling Garces 'gutless'.
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Commentator Scotty Stevenson reported: "Kieran Read's words if you did not hear them were 'that's pretty gutless,'" concerning an incident where the referee chose not to show a card for a sin-bin offence.
Reflecting upon the refereeing in the opening round, World Rugby has issued the following statement.
"Following the usual review of matches, the match officials team recognise that performances over the opening weekend of Rugby World Cup 2019 were not consistently of the standards set by World Rugby and themselves, but World Rugby is confident of the highest standards of officiating moving forward.
Watch his performance and the questionable decisions in the video below.
"Given this proactive approach, a strong team ethic and a superb support structure, World Rugby has every confidence in the team to ensure that Rugby World Cup 2019 delivers the highest levels of accurate, clear and consistent decision-making.
"Elite match officials are required to make decisions in complex, high-pressure situations, and there have been initial challenges with the use of technology and team communication, which have impacted decision-making. These are already being addressed by the team of 23 match officials to enhance consistency."
The video has been getting lots of scrutiny online where it draws particular attention to bad calls, particularly at the breakdowns, which seemed like a free for all.
It has received nearly 250,000 views and this only seems to be growing.News Now - Sport News