Marius Jonker must be replaced now as the TMO. Not because he is a cheat but because he was petrified to rule anything in the favour of the Springboks. He is incompetent, writes Mark Keohane.
I don’t blame Jonker for the Springboks first Test defeat against the British & Irish Lions, but my god it was embarrassing listening to Jonker crumble whenever a decision was referred his way. Even when he had to rule the Springboks try in their favour, he sounded apologetic for actually not finding something he could not rule against.
World Rugby, never make the mistake again of putting a local referee in the box for an international series.
Jonker’s biggest moment came with Willie le Roux’s try. The on-field decision was a try. He was asked if there was compelling evidence to change the decision. His response was that there was nothing ‘definitive’ but that Willie appeared to be in front.
Was he or was he not?
There was nothing ‘definitive’. His words. Not mine
Jonker should never be a TMO again when the Springboks play.
He then didn’t see anything wrong with Hamish Watson upending Le Roux with a spear tackle.
Jonker will be praised for his performance. It is world rugby’s way.
Stuff it up and we give you the next big game, as they did when Romain Poite stuffed up the third and final Test in the Lions versus All Blacks in 2017.
Where was Jonker when Tom Curry illegally scrummed into the Boks loosehead Ox Nche, on repeated television replays?
Jonker was a disgrace on Saturday night … not to South Africa, but to TMO’s.
He was so out of his depth, it was as embarrassing watching it, as it will be for him watching it for the rest of his life.
In a year, we will read (probably in Huisgenoot) of his heartache in feeling obliged in making the wrong decision.
His apology, every time he had to rule in favour of South Africa, was a cringe.
The Lions, this week, made a lot of South African being the TMO. They shouldn’t have. He was always going to be gold to them.
They should have been thankful.
What they don’t know about South Africans, is that (like Jonker), so many of them are so awed through their own insecurity that they would rather make the mistake and be applauded internationally.
Marius Jonker: You should never be allowed near a television set, let alone a rugby field.
Regardless of your nationality, you didn’t have the balls to make a rugby decision tonight because in your heart you know that Willie was not in front of the kicker and that Hamish Watson should have been carded.
Due to the sensitivity of almost everyone on Twitter, those who were offended with my abuse of Jonker had no issue abusing me.
However, I appreciate Jonker is sensitive and requires those overseas to appreciate his impartiality, so I am muted on my thoughts on him.
*PS … Boks to come back and win the series 2-1.