In my Independent Media Rants and Raves, I rave about Schalk Brits’s colossal contribution to Saracens over the last decade and take issue with the incompetence of Kiwi referee Nick Bryant at Newlands in the Stormers defeat to the Lions.
Schalk Brits’ final match for Saracens finished with a glorious English Premiership gold medal at Twickenham. Brits played just 10 Tests for SA, but has been sensational for Saracens. Opta released these numbers to emphasise his impact since 2009-10.
Tries: Brits 31. Next best 20
Carries: Brits: 1 249. Next best 830
Metres: Brits: 5 164. Next best 1 347
Breaks: Brits 77. Next best 24
Defenders beaten: Brits 231. Next best 101
Offloads: Brits 204. Next best 61
Try assists: Brits 20. Next best 6
Tackles: Brits 1 069. Next best 1 003
Lineout throws: Brits 1 294. Next best 1 153
Throw %: Brits 90.7. Next best 90.2
Renowned London Sunday Times rugby writer Stephen Jones described Brits as the most amazing rugby player he has ever seen. Those numbers would support such a view.
Sanzaar a fortnight ago refused to address any referee-related complaints, telling the media there was no need to, and that the refereeing in Super Rugby was of the highest standard.
Nick Bryant’s refereeing in the Lions’ win against the Stormers was the latest example of Sanzaar’s leadership again being embarrassed. Bryant, among his many mistakes, missed the most obvious knock on from Siya Kolisi, gave the scrum to the Stormers and they scored.
He had the chance to change his decision, but refused to. Surely, the aim is to use the TMO to get the right call made. The game’s integrity suffers with such incompetence.