Fans of Italian rugby have been angered today that Ryan Baird's tackle on Callesandro Fusco in the 64th minute of the match was not looked at by the TMO.
It was a surreal match at the Aviva yesterday. The uncontested scrums and surplus of overlaps gave it a sort of training game feel.
The decision to send off sub Hame Faiva radically altered the match. However, many on social media were wondering why the referees took no action on a tackle by Baird, which looked high.
In the second half Italian sub scrum-half Callesandro Fusco carried the ball into Irish second row and initially it looked like Baird - who is nearly 2 metres tall - had just soaked the tackle with his chest, with no foul play committed. However upon further replays, it seems as if Baird's shoulder might have made contact with the Italian's head. Regardless, the tackle wasn't inspected by the TMO which has fans furious.
I just keep wondering why the TMO failed to make the ref assess this hit.
Surely inconsistent given the previous decision in the same match.#IREvITA #GuinnessSixNations #SixNations #SeiNazioni pic.twitter.com/0M4X6QZZR6
— Italian Rugby Players Abroad (@italiansrugby) February 27, 2022
Many Monday morning TMOs have been making the comparison between the Faiva tackle and the Baird tackle and wondering why the Baird tackled wasn't reviewed. Of course, the game was already decided when the tackle occured, but the inconsistency in some calls over the past few weeks has left many fans frustrated.
Rugby puts a huge emphasis on player safety and is trying to clamp down on head injuries but over the past few weeks there seems to be a bit of complacency creeping into the matter. On Saturday Wales prop Tomas Francis was allowed to play on after a collision in a tackle looked to have sparked him.
Also on Saturday in the URC in Connacht's win over the Stormers, Stormers' centre Ruhan Nel was lucky to get away with just a yellow card for his high tackle on Connacht out-half Conor Fitzgerald. The tackle led to Fitzgerald going off as Tom Daly had to slot in at 10 to help Connacht get the win at the Sportsground.
It was a difficult weekend for rugby laws but hopefully now these issues have been highlighted World Rugby will have a look at it and amend the problems.