Rassie Erasmo. (Photo by Clement Mahoudeau/Gallo Images/Getty Images)
- Rassie Erasmus has reiterated that her series of tweets is not intended to criticize the refereeing in last weekend’s loss to France.
- The Springboks’ director of rugby insists he is simply pointing out “things the team needs to fix” and that he cannot control the narrative created by others.
- He also noted that his posts are part of an ongoing effort to improve engagement with South African fans who are invested in the team’s progress.
Regardless of how rugby people around the world interpret her sentiments, Rassie Erasmus insisted on Tuesday that her series of tweets examining various clips of the game from the 30-26 loss to France are not directed at referee Wayne Barnes.
There has been a growing sense of concern over the Springboks’ director of rugby’s conduct on the social media platform, which some argue amounts to an unnecessary provocation by World Rugby, the game’s custodians.
Erasmus recently returned from his 12-month match day suspension for his infamous 62-minute video of refereeing decisions in last year’s first test against the British & Irish Lions.
But Bok’s 50-year-old mentor denied that his posts were in any way related to arbitration.
“It’s not about trying with the refs. If I had to try with the ref, well, I don’t think Wayne Barnes would do all those [perceived] bad decisions. He is world number 1 and has 100 tests to his credit,” Erasmus said in a surprise appearance at the team’s announcement for Saturday’s encounter with Italy in Genoa.
“Obviously it’s something on our side that we need to fix. I just want the fans to understand that. If people put a narrative to it, I can’t control it.”
He specifically singled out a tweet about Sipili Falatea’s controversial spike attempt from the game, which many felt should not have been upheld due to three moves when placing the ball over the try-out line, as an apparent example of the national team not questioning the award process despite TMOs. the communication link is down in the backlog.
Guys at this level there’s no chance this hasn’t been reviewed, the chances of communications going down at that specific time is 1/100 minute of broadcast! So, in our opinion, a fair try after a proper review by the experienced Barnsy and his team! No fighting on our side! https://t.co/QvoGW2DFNL
— Rassie Erasmo (@RassieRugby) November 13, 2022
“If you read the tweets, people immediately adjust something to the narrative they want to put out. Even in [that specific] tweet where we noticed the TMO link was offline, I still won’t believe Wayne Barnes would let it slide and just say TMO is unavailable.
“I just wouldn’t believe that about him. That’s why we have no qualms,” Erasmus said, apparently suggesting that Barnes was simply trusting his decision on the field.
Instead, Erasmus reiterated that the posts are part of Springbok management’s ongoing effort to increase engagement with fans “invested” in seeing what the team is working on and help them gauge the team’s progress.
He also encouraged users, in a tweet earlier in the day, using the much cruder term “parasite,” who find his posts counterproductive to simply ignore or unfollow him.
15 Willie le Roux, 14 Cheslin Kolbe, 13 Damian de Allende, 12 Andre Esterhuizen, 11 Kurt-Lee Arendse, 10 Damian Willemse, 9 Faf de Klerk, 8 Jasper Wiese, 7 Franco Mostert, 6 Siya Kolisi (captain), 5 Marvin Orie, 4 Salmaan Moerat, 3 Frans Malherbe, 2 Bongi Mbonambi, 1 Ox Nche
Substitutes: 16 Malcolm Marx, 17 Steven Kitshoff, 18 Vincent Koch, 19 Eben Etzebeth, 20 Kwagga Smith, 21 Evan Roos, 22 Cobus Reinach, 23 Manie Libbok
“We’ve always had the #StrongerTogether hashtag as South Africans. We’ve always been close to our fans. When something goes wrong on the pitch people form their own opinions and that’s understandable, but just read carefully or ‘listen’ to those tweets.” said.
“They’re being done so that the South African fans understand that there are some things that some guys on the other side are doing really well, that we don’t understand. Cheslin, for example, can’t get that high if he’s not going to knock the guy back. You will have to go lower.
“This is to share with SA fans that when you make a 10m pass, sometimes it’s an optical illusion and looks straight ahead. A short pass can turn out to be exactly the same. If we don’t learn from those things and never get it right.” . , things will not change.
“I don’t tag people, I don’t criticize the refs. I say these are the things we need to fix, if someone doesn’t want to follow that, unfollow me. But surely there are SA supporters.” to know where we are going, what we are doing well and where we are going wrong.
“Whether it’s the way we communicate, read the game or actions when we fall on the wrong side, those are things we need to fix.”