Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Tactics Cannot Be Criticised, but the Technology Has Got Its Limitations

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Tactics Cannot Be Criticised, but the Technology Has Got Its Limitations

Article excerpt

ENGLAND and Ireland inched closer to a NatWest Six Nations title decider by extending their 100 per cent records at the weekend.

Here, we look at five things we learned from the action in round two.

Rugby's video technology is far from infallible THE role of the Television Match Official (TMO) was confirmed as rugby's chief thankless task as England ground past Wales 12-6 at Twickenham.

Not even every camera angle, slowmotion replay under the sun and all the time in the world could throw up an immediate and clear answer to the question of whether Gareth Anscombe had scored or not.

Glenn Newman, the TMO in question, ruled that Anthony Watson had beaten the Wales full-back to touch down and therefore deny the visitors a try.

Replays appeared to indicate t Anscombe had indeed touched down first - but other angles from build-up play suggested an earlier knock-on.

Cue Wales fans decrying the decision and English insisting justice was upheld, however circuitously.

The only surety? The technology still has limits, humans will make mistakes - and everyone must move on.

Injuries could slow Ireland's charge IRELAND'S facile 56-19 thumping of sorry Italy Mike Brown threw up precious few concerns, save for two potentially problematic injuries. Centre Robbie Henshaw will miss the rest of the campaign with the shoulder injury he sustained, while prop Tadhg Furlong hobbled off with hamstring trouble.

Henshaw has provided defensive ballast for Ireland, allied to strong running in attack, and will take some replacing. The outlook on Furlong remains more positive - he is expected to be fit to face Wales on February 24 - and Ireland will certainly need the outstanding British and Irish Lions tighthead as they chase a potential title-deciding showdown with England at Twickenham on St Patrick's Day. …

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