29 Aug '15, 1pm

Resurrecting an old @Scienceofsport post about influence & unique situation of the referee in rugby #RWC2015

I cannot think of another sport where the interpretation of the rule by an official so clearly influences the way that teams play the match. In football (soccer), the most contentious decisions are those when a penalty appeal is made, offsides is ruled, or when foul-play is adjudged. They are fairly clear-cut, and far less frequent than in rugby. And certainly, they can influence matches in a big way – I’m not downplaying how significant a referee decision can be. In the NFL, decisions can be similarly significant, but usually involve clear transgressions of rules. Tennis, there’s no influence, particularly now that television replays are used. And similarly, cricket umpires are often criticized and single decisions can be very influential, but with TV assistance, the incidence of these has certainly come down. If there is a sport that I’m missing, please let me know.

Full article: http://sportsscientists.com/2011/10/rugby-world-cup-the-r...

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