May 27, 2017

Six Nations Rugby to review incidents at end of France-Wales game

20 March 2017, 07:20 | Taylor George

Six Nations Rugby to review incidents at end of France-Wales game

Rob Howley

France seemed to be throwing away another win after centre Remi Lamerat's converted try and Lopez's penalty made it 10-0 after 16 minutes.

Nobody at Stade de France could claim they did not get their money's worth after one of the most weird games of rugby ever seen in the Six Nations.

France players celebrate scoring a late try.

Wales captain Alun Wyn Jones is sweating on his Lions place after suffering a left shoulder injury in the second half.

I know Wayne (Barnes), I've been in his changing room a couple of times to talk about that process and the evidence suggests that it's not in the integrity of our game.

There had been no obvious collision and Barnes confirmed last night that when he asked the player if there was a problem before the doctor reached him Atonio [brought up in Auckland and fluent in English] replied that he had a sore back but was OK. Nothing comes of the attack though so France will have yet another penalty, and Barnes gives Warburton another warning. Match ends at 99:55.

Slimani had earlier been replaced but the France team doctor insisted that Atonio needed an HIA, therefore allowing Slimani to go back on as France laid siege to Wales' line through a series of scrums. How coincidental. That Atonio walked down the tunnel alone, without a medic for the HIA, did not go unnoticed. However, Barnes had not stopped the clock - he would not do so again until full-time - meaning that when play restarted, the clock was up to the 86th minute, and crucially Lee's sin-bin was already down to 6:31 without a second being played.

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Wayne Barnes' actions have been defended by a former referee from Wales.

It is unclear what punishment will be meted out if it is revealed that Atonio did not need to be replaced.

Scrum collapses and re-sets contributed to the 20 added minutes in the France-Wales rugby test. But controversy would arise once more before play could resume.

The referee is now checking with the TMO as there has been an allegation of a bite involving North in the middle of a tackle. The home crowd are right behind their side now but the Welsh players are getting behind each other too knowing one good scrum could be enough.

The word "cheating" was used very frequently in the post-match press conference but, hard as he was pressed, Rob Howley, Wales's interim head coach refused to utter the "C" word himself.

Howley said replacement prop Uini Atonio's substitution by starter Rabah Slimani in stoppage time was unlawful and that there was evidence Welsh winger George North had been bitten. Francis may well have to come back on here if France opt to go for a scrum from the penalty.

Finally, something similar to a game of rugby would resume, and Chouly would score the all-important try for the French, though that did not stop the stadium announcer giving Camille Chat the credit.

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