There was consternation in Bloemfontein when Western Province wanted Conrad Jantjes to go back onto the field after he had been in the blood bin. Western Province management were upset when Jantjes was not allowed to resume playing.
Rugby 365 reports that there was a similar incident at Ellis Park, as it then was, when the Lions played the Sharks earlier this year. Then the Sharks were angry with the timekeeper and were also in the wrong.
It’s not pleasant or good for the game of rugby when the visiting team clearly thinks the home team’s officials are cheating.
Not long before half-time Jantjes clashed heads with Robert Ebersohn, an accidental, passing clash, but Jantjes had to go off to have the bleeding stopped.
There was a stoppage and Jantjes left the field. The stoppage occurred at 32 minutes 12 seconds in the first half of the match.
At top matches in South Africa there are time keepers. The timekeeper at this match was Albert Mocke, a Bloemfontein headmaster. He received a report that Jantjes had left the field because he was bleeding. A stopwatch was then started to record the time that Jantjes was off.
The duration of the stoppage was 1 minute 24 seconds.
Also on duty at matches are two referees referred to as No.4 and No.5. They help the referee by controlling the coming and going of players. The two concerned in this match were Johan Wasserman and Sakkie Meyer. In addition there is a manager of the touch-line, in this case Schübel O’Reilly, the referees’ manager in the Free State.
The players went off for half-time. Half-time is presumed to be ten minutes but it need not be exactly so as the television broadcasters control the duration of half-time.
Also in the blood bin during half-time was the Cheetahs loosehead Wiaan du Preez.
The Cheetahs stayed within the playing enclosure during half-time and Western Province went to their change room during half time.
During half time, those controlling the coming and going of players spoke to the timekeeper about the two players in the blood bin. He told them that both players should start the second half.
Sakkie Meyer told the Cheetahs management this and when the Western Province team came back to the field Johan Wasserman told them that Jantjes should start the second half. Western Province’s team manager told Wasserman that Jantjes was still changing his jersey.
Jantjes returned to the field and did some jogging while the match was restarted.
The management of the Western Province told O’Reilly that the officials were in error as half-time was not a past of the time reckoned for the blood bin.
Law 3.10 TEMPORARY REPLACEMENT(a) When a player leaves the field to have bleeding controlled and/or have an open wound covered, that player may be temporarily replaced. If the player who has been temporarily replaced does not return to the field of play within 15 minutes (actual time) of leaving the playing area, the replacement becomes permanent and the replaced player must not return to the field of play.
Actual time means simply ordinary running time. There is no stoppage involved. This is distinct from playing time which allows for stoppages. In actual time – the time for everybody in Bloemfontein and beyond – includes half-time. If the 15 minutes for the blood bin have elapsed during half-time the player is allowed to resume playing with his team at the start of the second half on the preemption that he had indeed rejoined his team during half-time and so before the 15 minutes had elapsed.
The timekeeper can show that more than 15 minutes had elapsed before Jantjes attempted to return to the field.
The clock stopped on 32 minutes 12 seconds in the match. That was when Jantjes left the field.
Play continued for 2 minutes 25 seconds after the hooter has sounded for half-time. Accept the half-time as 10 minutes.
The time that had elapsed from when Jantjes left the playing field till the kick-off of the second half came to 20 minutes 13 seconds.
The officials were right to insist that Jantjes stay off the field. The Western Province management were wrong to be angry with the match officials. And, as they say, ignorance of the law is not an excuse, especially if it is a law affecting your functions.
There is logical reasoning why the blood bin is actual time and the sin bin is playing time. The blood bin is not a punishment. It is for the good of the players but it is reckoned that if the cause of the bleeding cannot be stopped within 15 minutes then the injury is serious and the player would not continue. The sin bin is punishment. The team is then required to play without the errant player for 15 minutes.Tweet