Brumbies want referee Walsh axed - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Brumbies want referee Walsh axed

By Jim Morton 26/04/2010 05:25:57 PM Comments (0)

The Brumbies have panned referee Steve Walsh's performance and called for his axing from Saturday night's crucial Super 14 clash with red-hot Queensland.

Still upset about Walsh's controversial handling of the 19-12 loss to NSW, Wallabies playmaker Matt Giteau felt it was pointless for the Brumbies to line up at Canberra Stadium if the Sydney-based New Zealander was officiating.

Brumbies coach Andy Friend on Monday remained hopeful Walsh would be dropped from the pivotal match by SANZAR referees convenor Lyndon Bray following the weekly review of officials on Tuesday

"We'll wait and see whether he's the referee," Friend said in Canberra.

"They have a review tomorrow and they have got a promotion and relegation system and hopefully you would like to see that in place and working.

"That's up to the selectors to give their view and we can only deal with what we see and I thought the first 30 minutes it wasn't a very even contest."

It's understood the ACT-based outfit completed a scathing report of the refereeing at ANZ Stadium last Saturday night where they were unhappy with numerous areas, especially a disallowed try to Adam Ashley-Cooper and countless scrum resets and penalties.

Brumbies skipper Stephen Hoiles and Walsh had some heated verbal exchanges during the match.

Giteau was frank when asked whether he was hoping Walsh would be relegated.

"I think everyone is," the frustrated five-eighth said. "Mate I don't know if we will turn up - what's the point?"

Giteau also failed to suppress his opinion about the dubious "double-movement" ruling against Ashley-Cooper in the first half.

"Like anyone that knows rugby, that was a try," he said.

New Zealand-based Bray was not contactable on Monday but both the Brumbies, who are seven points outside the top four, and Reds will have their eyes on refereeing appointment confirmations on Tuesday.

Australian whistleblower Paul Marks was dumped from a round five appointment after being deemed to have delivered a crucial wrong call by not awarding the Sharks a match-winning penalty try against the Waratahs from an illegal Kurtley Beale knockdown.

Giteau has more to be concerned about than Walsh with Reds five-eighth Quade Cooper stealing a march on his claims to be the Wallabies No.10 again this season.

Outside in-form Test halfback Will Genia, Cooper has been superb for the resurgent Reds who need to win two of their final three matches to guarantee a first finals campaign in nine years.

"It's going to be a big challenge but like any Australian side, the 10 is always measured by how the team is performing so hopefully our side wins and that's all I care about," Giteau said.

"The Wallabies is the furthest thing from my mind, I'm just worrying about the Brumbies."

Friend ruled veteran flanker George Smith out of making a return from a lingering nerve problem against the Reds but was hopeful of having both Julian Huxley (hamstring) and Stirling Mortlock (back).

"We'll know more on Thursday but we're literally on the bones of our backside at the moment so hopefully those two will be okay," he said.

The Brumbies starting 15 was spared from training on Monday due to the physicality of the Waratahs clash.

Reds coach Ewen McKenzie reported lock Van Humphries (ankle) and wing Rod Davies (hamstring) were on the improve after missing the 16-13 win over the Stormers while he's also hopeful Laurie Weeks (foot) can pack down in the front-row.

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