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I had absolutely no idea how Hodge avoided being sent off against the Flying Fijians - Kaplan

I had absolutely no idea how Hodge avoided being sent off against the Flying Fijians - Kaplan

By Naveel Krishant
Monday 23/09/2019
Ben O'Keeffe was the referee in charge of Australia v Fiji at the Rugby World Cup

Former top international rugby referee Jonathan Kaplan says he had "absolutely no idea" how Wallabies winger Reece Hodge avoided being sent off against the Fiji Airways Flying Fijians.

Kaplan wrote in his Daily Telegraph column that going into this tournament, World Rugby had been very clear about contact with the head and what constitutes a red card under their new High Tackle Sanction framework.

He says he has absolutely no idea why Hodge was not sent off for his tackle on Peceli Yato.

Hodge has since been cited for the tackle that left Yato concussed and has now been labeled that it met the red card threshold for an act of foul play.

Kaplan says to him it was completely clear and an almost textbook example of the type of challenge they are trying to outlaw.

South African sports scientist Ross Tucker, who helped draw up World Rugby's framework to help referees decide how to sanction high shots, said it should have been an automatic red card.                   

The Flying Fijians will face Uruguay at 5.15 pm Wednesday. The Fiji team will be named today.

Meanwhile, Wales takes on Georgia at 10.15 tonight while Samoa takes on Russia at 10.15 pm tomorrow.

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