Time to bury the ref hatchet

Written by Rob Otto (robdylan)

Posted in :Original Content, Sharks, Super Rugby on 23 Feb 2016 at 10:42
Tagged with : , , , , , ,

The refereeing appointments for the first round of Super Rugby 2016 have been announced and I was all set to have another whinge about the Sharks’ dreadful luck. I’ve decided, though, that it’s time to rather try a fresh approach.

If I’m to be brutally honest with myself, I can’t even remember why it is that I dislike Jaco van Heerden so much. Sure, there must have been a game somewhere in the last two or three seasons when I felt van Heerden gave the Sharks a raw deal, but the reality is that it’s starting to feel really counter-productive to hold these never-ending grudges against match officials. Referees are human and make game-changing mistakes: this is not a new or particularly controversial statement. The flip side to this argument is that players are also human and, on balance, will make far more game-changing mistakes as a collection of 15 over the course of 80 minutes than the referee ever could.

It’s time, other words, for us as Sharks fans to get over our grudges against van Heerden, Lourens van der Merwe, Ben Crouse, Steve Walsh and goodness knows how many other refs we’ve decided have something personal against our team.

The Sharks seem keen to play positive rugby with a positive mindset this season. We’ve been a shockingly poor team from a discipline points of view over the last few seasons and that aspect surely has to change if we’re to develop and improve on our woeful 2015 performance. I’d like to think that a culture of personal discipline and respect for the match officials must surely go hand in hand with this new approach and I’m personally rather hopeful that starting on Saturday, we’ll take the first steps towards a completely different type of relationship between the Sharks team and the Super Rugby refereeing panel as a whole.

It’s time for the Sharks to lose the petulant bad boy tag, because when you fight against the officials and the disciplinary system, you are always going to lose.

Here are the appointments for round 1 (In order, referee, assistant referees, TMO):

Blues v Highlanders: Glen Jackson, Paul Williams, Brendon Pickerill, Ben Skeen
Brumbies v Hurricanes: Andrew Lees, Rohan Hoffmann, Michael Hogan, Damien Mitchelmore
Cheetahs v Jaguares Stuart Berry, Rasta Rasivhenge, Lourens van der Merwe, Johan Greeff
Sunwolves v Lions Ben O’Keeffe, Shuhei Kubo, Aki Aso, Takashi Hareda
Crusaders v Chiefs Chris Pollock, Jamie Nutbrown, Kane McBride, Glenn Newman
Waratahs v Reds Angus Gardner, Nic Berry, James Leckie, George Ayoub
Force v Rebels Marius van der Westhuizen, Quinton Immelman, Graham Cooper, Damien Mitchelmore
Kings v Sharks Jaco van Heerden, Rodney Bonaparte, AJ Jacobs, Marius Jonker
Stormers v Bulls Craig Joubert, Rasta Rasivhenge, Cwengile Jadezweni, Christie du Preez


  • “I can’t even remember why it is that I dislike Jaco van Heerden”, my mind goes to a game against the Bulls at Loftus, might be wrong.

  • Comment 1, posted at 23.02.16 10:52:45 by Seth101 Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter Author
  • I really struggle to move past the refereeing performances of certain individuals in games away from home against our Australasian counterparts but acknowledge that my beef may actually be with World Rugby and its Referees Panel.

  • Comment 2, posted at 23.02.16 10:53:05 by vanmartin Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Author
  • I don’t know that I can bury the hatchet, but I’ll try my best. πŸ™‚

  • Comment 3, posted at 23.02.16 10:53:16 by Letgo Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Author
  • We do try not to involve the ref in discussions. But the mere fact that you needed to write an article about it just highlight what influence they have. Bottom line… the tv ref and the forward pass has been a disaster. 9.8 times out 10 they get it wrong. So yes the ref will also get calls wrong. It happens in Cricket also but at least they can refer. Our captains arent even allow to sometimes talk to a ref.
    Anyway… dont think refs will be the major contributer to where we will ben ending at the end of all this… but good luck and I will be shouting for the boys in Black and White… and I’m sure at the ref too

  • Comment 4, posted at 23.02.16 10:56:36 by ebenp Reply

  • @Letgo (Comment 3) : That’s all I can promise too πŸ˜€

  • Comment 5, posted at 23.02.16 10:57:00 by vanmartin Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Author
  • Personally I think “burying the hatchet” is basically condoning the shocking state reffing is in around the world, while world rugby sit back and do nothing.

  • Comment 6, posted at 23.02.16 10:58:07 by Seth101 Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter Author
  • @Seth101 (Comment 1) : That was a shocker

  • Comment 7, posted at 23.02.16 10:58:17 by ebenp Reply

  • @Seth101 (Comment 6) : Think rob meant to give the ref a chance and not be pissed at the guy before the whistle blows. If he has a shocker we can definitely complain.

  • Comment 8, posted at 23.02.16 11:00:01 by Dragnipur Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Author
  • @Dragnipur (Comment 8) : I have a problem with the state of reffing as a whole, grudges against individuals is silly. There are some shit refs, but the bigger picture is the fault of world rugby.

  • Comment 9, posted at 23.02.16 11:03:06 by Seth101 Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter Author
  • @Seth101 (Comment 1) : He is a BIG “Blou NUL” that is why.

  • Comment 10, posted at 23.02.16 11:06:19 by Bronzi Shark Reply

  • @Dragnipur (Comment 8) : Yeah, that’s how I read it too

  • Comment 11, posted at 23.02.16 11:06:27 by vanmartin Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Author
  • tough crowd…. :mrgreen:

  • Comment 12, posted at 23.02.16 11:08:51 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • @Dragnipur (Comment 8) : And he love himself a hell of a lot!!!!!!!!

  • Comment 13, posted at 23.02.16 11:09:15 by Bronzi Shark Reply

  • The only ref I can clearly say I have an issue with is Steve Walsh and that is because I find him inconsistent. On saying that I do acknowledge that he is inconsistent to both teams so you often get the rub of the green and the poor calls going to both teams during the game.

    Whatever became of that very young ref who debuted in Super Rugby 2013?

  • Comment 14, posted at 23.02.16 11:10:18 by Hulk Reply

  • That pass at Loftus to Kriel was something like 6 meters forward, and his buddy in the TMO box helped him. Both members of the BB refs association. There is no way it couldve been an honest mistake. It was blatant cheating and I will not ever bury the hatchet.

  • Comment 15, posted at 23.02.16 11:32:06 by West Indies Cricket Board Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld
    West Indies Cricket Board
  • @West Indies Cricket Board (Comment 15) : πŸ‘Ώ πŸ‘Ώ πŸ‘Ώ

  • Comment 16, posted at 23.02.16 11:34:32 by West Indies Cricket Board Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld
    West Indies Cricket Board
  • @Letgo (Comment 3) : @vanmartin (Comment 5) : @West Indies Cricket Board (Comment 15) : I’m all for burying the hatchet. In Jaco van Heerden’s pro-Blue Bull, biased head….

  • Comment 17, posted at 23.02.16 11:57:16 by Culling Song Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Author
    Culling Song
  • @West Indies Cricket Board (Comment 15) : Wasn’t the only ‘mistake’ of that match, but it was the most blatant.

    For every other ref I am more than happy to bury the hatchet, even Walsh, but not Jaco van Heerden.

  • Comment 18, posted at 23.02.16 11:57:32 by Die Kriek Reply

  • hope sharks have a chat with refs before games..and that both rob du preez and mouneimne make it clear to the ref they will discuss game afterwards.

  • Comment 19, posted at 23.02.16 12:31:11 by 50shadesofshark Reply

  • I think before the Sharks can complain about any ref they need to sort out their own ill discipline. They are probably the team that gives away the most blatant penalties. So fix that and i suspect the refereeing will be fixed too.

  • Comment 20, posted at 23.02.16 12:46:28 by SheldonK Reply

  • Why is van Heerden handling this game when you have an experienced and very good ref in Marius Jonker on the side lines.
    There should be only one criteria as to who should ref,the man with the most experience.
    van Heerden’s bigest problem beside his ego, is that he is desperate to impress,and that makes for the worst kinda ref ,the one who thinks its all about him.

  • Comment 21, posted at 23.02.16 13:03:35 by The hound Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld
    The hound
  • Geez can’t promise I can do it but I will try!!!!!!!!!!! If I can’t can I bury their bodies with the hatchet?!?! 😈

  • Comment 22, posted at 23.02.16 13:03:39 by JD Reply
    Friend of SharksworldCompetition Winner Administrator
  • @The hound (Comment 21) : Hasn’t Marius Jonker retired from refereeing…I think he is now exclusively a TMO…

  • Comment 23, posted at 23.02.16 23:08:50 by pastorshark Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Administrator
  • Hmmm…sometimes it’s just more fun to have a go… πŸ˜€

  • Comment 24, posted at 23.02.16 23:09:31 by pastorshark Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Administrator
  • Thinking about this, I only remember the times when apparent or alleged referee mistakes favored the Bulls.

    As in the 2007 final…Or Hougie;’s game winning try against the Crusaders that time….Kriel’s beautiful “flat” pass last year.
    Even though Kaplan’s block on the Sharks defenders and Fourie’s resulting try literally happened eons ago, it’s as clear as yesterday in my memory.

    For the life of me I cannot recall a single instance where the Bulls were done in the same way. Am I just a different kind of fan or is there some big conspiracy here?


  • Comment 25, posted at 24.02.16 02:22:17 by fyndraai Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld
  • Watching yesterday’s game now. There is no way I will even trust Jaco van Heerden with a laerskool game.

    He is the most pathetic referee ever!

  • Comment 26, posted at 28.02.16 12:37:19 by Die Kriek Reply

  • @Die Kriek (Comment 26) : hate to say, I agree. He was utter tripe

  • Comment 27, posted at 28.02.16 18:15:00 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • @Die Kriek (Comment 26) : @robdylan (Comment 27) : it’s just a good thing that the Sharks were good enough so that he could not have an influence on the result.

  • Comment 28, posted at 28.02.16 21:11:20 by JD Reply
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