The All Blacks are rejecting a former international referee’s assertion they get away with murder on the rugby field.
Writing in The Times, Rob Debney suggested there was leniency towards the All Blacks subconsciously.
He says the scrutiny a referee comes under in ruling against them is incredible compared to other teams.
His comments come in the wake of the sinbinning of French lock Paul Gabrillagues for a high tackle, whereas the no All Blacks were sent off for similar offences during the first test in Auckland at the weekend.
But All Blacks assistant coach Ian Foster denies the All Blacks get special treatment.
“We don’t think we get any favours from the referees at all.
“I don’t know a top referee who doesn’t just go out there just to ref it the way he sees it,” he said.
The All Blacks might even have a case that they are being over penalised.
“I think if you look at penalty counts and yellow cards last year weren’t we one of the top yellow carded teams in the world? So I’m not sure how this ‘soft on us’ comes to fruition,” said Foster.
Despite losing by over 40 points in the opening test Foster doubts the tourists wil push the panic button and make radical changes for the second in Wellington this weekend.
“I’d be surprised (especially after being up) 11-8 at halftime.
“The first 50 minutes was very, very tight test match … and it’s one of those challenges in sport when you are on the coaching panel ‘how do you react to a scoreline like that? But if they put the scoreline to one side and focus on the performance I’m assuming they will be reasonably happy with large parts of that game,” said Foster.
Meanwhile All Blacks prop Ofa Tu’ungafasi has been given a warning following his high hit on French winger Remy Grosso during the first Test.
The Citing Commissioner has decided that Tu’ungafasi executed a dangerouis tackle “just short of” red card level.
Fellow All Black Sam Cane escaped any punishment for his part in the tackle.