Referee AJ Jacobs out in the cold after Newlands red card incident


From blowing the main match of Currie Cup Round 1 to twiddling his thumbs in Round 2.

Has referee AJ Jacobs been given time off to think about what transpired at Newlands last Saturday?


For those who didn’t watch or haven’t followed The South African website, Jacobs and TMO on the day, Rasta Rasivhenge, combined to hand out a controversial red card to Bulls prop Jacques van Rooyen in their clash against Western Province.

In a nutshell, Rasivhenge flagged a dangerous tackle, suggested a yellow card, Jacobs questioned what had happened, the big screen wasn’t working at Newlands, Rasta puzzlingly changed his mind, Van Rooyen was sent off.

And the Bulls won with 14 men.

Despite Van Rooyen subsequently being banned for a week, the general consensus was the tackle merited a yellow at worst.

A separate referees meeting was held to discuss the handling of the incident. While we know the outcome of the disciplinary hearing to ban Van Rooyen, predictably SA Rugby revealed nothing regarding any sanction for the officials.  

South Africa’s most experienced Test referee, Jonathan Kaplan, also weighed into the discussion, querying how Jacobs was able to lead the conversation without the luxury of a big screen replay.


Fast forward a week and Jacobs’ name was missing from the list of officials set to do duty in Round 2.

Not even a seat in a TMO booth.

However, Rasivhenge’s name does appear among the officials for the weekend. He will fulfill the Assistant Referee role in Saturday’s late match (19:00) between the Lions and WP in Johannesburg.

Rasivhenge will join Marius van der Westhuizen running the touchlines, with Griffin Colby the referee. Marius Jonker will be in the TMO booth.

Saturday’s earlier match (16:30) between the Bulls and Cheetahs in Pretoria will be handled by Jaco Peyper. Aimee Barrett-Theron and Paul Mente will be the Assistant Referees, while Johan Greeff will be on TMO duty.

Friday’s match between the Pumas and Griquas in Nelspruit (19:00) will be refereed by Stuart Berry. Mente will again be on Assistant Referee duty along with Morne Ferreira. Willie Vos will be the TMO.

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