RUGBY

Rugby stars back petition to replay Belgium-Spain game

Marco Tauleigne, Jacques Burger and Nico Sánchez have joined Clive Woodward in calling for a replay. A change.org petition has collected 10,000 signatures.
Ryder Cup 2018 final day: Europe vs USA, Sunday singles

Two days after the controversial game between Belgium and Spain in Brussels that saw the latter miss out on automatic spot in the 2019 Rugby World Cup, the fall-out continues.

World Rubgy has said it will open an investigation into the game, which Belgium won to hand Romania the final European direct qualifying spot, after the Spanish Rugby Federation complained about the performance of referee Vlad Iordachescu and his assistants, all of whom are Romanian.

On Tuesday England’s 2003 World Cup-winning coach Clive Woordward called for the game to be replayed and he was joined by figures within the game including France internationals Baptiste Serin and Jefferson Poirot and Argentina fly-half Nico Sánchez. Spai has received the most backing from France, where the hashtag #JusticeForSpainRugby has been doing the rounds on the internet.

Sánchez also posted on social media: “Spain didn’t lose, rugby did. Seriously, three Romanian officials?”

The social justice website change.org has even launched a petition in support of the Spain side after their 18-10 defeat, calling on World Rugby to “show an example in the world of sport and display it with action because rugby is different.”

In just a few hours the petition had garnered 10,000 signatures.

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