Manu Tuilagi smashes Tom Williams

Top14 player imposter!

JDV smashed by Benoit August

The Northampton Saints 30m scrum!

Bastareaud huge hit on Rory Lamont

All Blacks skills - Pt 2 In the backyard

Trinh-Duc sets up Harinordoquy try

Wales vs England 1999

Greg Holmes great hit on Francois Louw

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Incredible chase by Lifeimi Mafi to stop Dwayne Peel

In a game that ended up looking more like a tropical monsoon, Munsters Lifeimi Mafi showed tremendous guts, determination, and most importantly immense speed, to chase down and catch Llanelli Scarlet Dwayne Peel.

Lets not forget that Dwayne Peel is regarded as being lightning fast by most. He outstripped Rua Tipoki who is no slouch, and looked to be home for the try.

The effort by Mafi was great to see. Raw pace is a vital component to any rugby players armoury, and in Lifeimi Mafi, Munster have got themselves a gem. He saved the try, but unfortunately got yellow carded by Wayne Barnes for smothering the ball before getting back to his feet. The correct call, and it was a pity to see him go, but saving the try was well worth it and one of the best try saving chases and tackles I've seen in a while.




  • I'm not sure that was the correct call actually. He got to his feet just about and tried to rip the ball. You could just as easily ping Dwayne for holding on. If anybody watched the Wasps game at the weekend, Dallaglio did exactly the same thing to the Clermont winger and was roundly praised by everybody.

    That shows what a complete mess the rucking laws are in rugby union. At any given breakdown there are at least three offences. Nobody lets go of the ball immediately, nobody lets go of the tackled man immediately, nobody stays on their feet, everybody uses their hands. It's just down to the referee to make his mind up which ones he wants to penalise.

    By Anonymous Will, at December 11, 2007 12:21 pm  

  • Agree with will entirely here.

    By Anonymous Carl, at December 11, 2007 12:32 pm  

  • excellent try saver. but man i wish dwayne peel was back to his best. in 2005 he was the best scrum half in the world.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at December 11, 2007 12:35 pm  

  • looking at it, it seems like Peel might of slowed down just before he was tackled, maybe he thought he was free and clear?

    By Anonymous Dai Rhys, at December 11, 2007 12:44 pm  

  • Will, I agree with you 100% that it's a mess regarding the law. In the upcoming Super14 the introduction of the new experimental ELV's should make things better and hopefully be the way forward around the world.

    I do however think he was trying to get to his feet, but couldn't (probably cos he slipped in the marshpit) so he smothered and lay on Peel, preventing the quick ball for Llanelli.

    That said, it is 50/50 most of the time unfortunately and there will hopefully be more clarity surrounding the ruck laws in future.

    By Blogger Rugbydump, at December 11, 2007 12:54 pm  

  • As a non-expert fan I thought that Mafi didn't do serious infractions (i.e. not enough for the sin-binned), also because Dallaglio did the same...

    Nevertheless (and hoping rucks get effectively more dynamic with the ELV system), it's me or this Heineken cup is producing a lot of excellent matches? Can't wait for Super14 and Heineken to overlap...



    By Anonymous Randorama, at December 11, 2007 2:21 pm  

  • I agree that is was a harsh call, but I think the ref called it because Mafi seemed to roll on top and lie on peel rather than be on his feet. Mafi was more on his knees than he was on his feet.

    Tough call, excellent work by mafi. Who knows in another game Peel could have been pinged for holding on.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at December 11, 2007 2:25 pm  

  • In the middle of the pitch this would just be a penelty. but since it's so close to the try line its ruled a yellow as far as i know the laws dont change as you move toward the try line.
    to me thats the more contraversial part about the way the laws are interpreted. i think if you kill a ball deliberately it should either be a yellow anywhere on the pitch or just a penelty anywhere on the pitch. (as far as strict interpretation). obvioulsy killing the ball with your heels on your won tryline is far easier to deem intentional.

    in any case it was a great tackle and really a pretty good call by the sir becasue i didnt see Mafi grab the ball while he was on the ground at first. the first time i saw it i thought it was a great attempt to poach the ball but when they slowed it down on that side angle you can definately see that he wasnt up when he first grabbed the ball so that was a good penelty call by the referee. but i dont know about sin bin.

    By Anonymous Dollop, at December 11, 2007 4:44 pm  

  • Not even close to the right call. Mafi clearly regains his feet and Peel doesn't release while lying on his back. He wasn't smothering Peel at all. He had hold of the ball and was trying to rip it away from him (which he succeeds to do at the end just before Barnes blows his whistle of ignorance - look closely).

    Not saying that Barnes should have let it go on that long though. By that time Peel had corrupted the ball. Barnes should indeed have blown it up but it should have been Peel who was pinged.

    By Anonymous GordonB, at December 11, 2007 5:02 pm  

  • yea.. i agree .. he was on his feet.. well.. anyway.. it was still worth it.. a true hero indeed for his club

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at December 11, 2007 5:24 pm  

  • Unfortunately for Mafi, Barnesy got this one right.

    Mafi's arms seem to clearly attempt to either tie Peel's up, or at the very least "shield" Peel from the off-load passing lane (which is directly behind the ball carrier).

    Had Mafi NOT blocked that lane, the pop pass would have been on. Mafi's actions took that option away from Peel, and thus the penalty.

    However, I think that at any other level (non-pro), the shielding by Mafi goes uncalled.

    Seems a timing issue more than cynicism. However, the support player was so close to being there, the yellow was appropriate. Arguably the Pen

    By Anonymous Cheyanquí, at December 11, 2007 6:12 pm  

  • thats class try saver

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at December 11, 2007 7:51 pm  

  • I agree with will, in the replay you can quite clearly see his knees off the ground as he bridges Peel, in fact it should have been Peel pinged for holding on!

    By Anonymous WE BEAT BISHOP JUSTICE COME ON, at December 11, 2007 10:01 pm  

  • I was surprised he got past Tipoki. Tipoki is so fast he nearly got past Vunibaka once.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at December 11, 2007 10:16 pm  

  • as a HUGE munster supporter i just want to say i love munster rugby and seeing this posted made my day
    as soon as i heard of the messy conditions i hoped for a post on rugbydump, and my prayers were granted
    and about the penalty, at first loko i thought he killed it, but the slow side view made it appear peel rolls over towards his support, pulling the ball and mafi who was attempting to poach it over onto himself
    either way, great try saver and we should
    and about rucking laws, only in the higher levels are the rucks that messy, at lower levels there are good rucks with players bound together
    a ruck is defined as a "loose scrum", so in esence it involves people bound toghether and locked up liek front rowers, which pro rucks never are, so the only level it is a problme at it pro, so if they were taught to pay more attention to proper rucking, they wouldnt have that issue

    By Anonymous Chris P, at December 12, 2007 12:19 am  

  • Wayne Barnes again eh, spose its better a clown like him is involved in rugby rather than law since law has a greater affect on peoples lives (unless your a kiwi lol)

    Fantastic chase down too :D

    By Anonymous Hangover, at December 12, 2007 2:51 am  

  • yep, another great 'call' from Barnes

    By Blogger boomshanka, at December 12, 2007 5:09 am  

  • easy one..if you're off your feet, you have no rights. If Peel had released the ball as the rules state Mafi would've turned it over within seconds. In regards to sheilding the ball from being popped off the ground, no-where does the law say that you cant stop someone doing that. Mafi had all the rights once he stood up. Gotta love Wayne Barnes' carrying on his "school teacher" attitude when sin-binning him.

    Why the f*k doesn't he just explain to Lifemi why he has yellow carded him when he asks rather than being a nob and just pointing to the stands.

    Just shows how insecure he is about his sin-bin call and feels he shouldnt have to explain his actions.

    Really grates me when refs do this! When its a questionable call, it helps players to understand what the ref is thinking so that they dont infringe further...Barnes you tool!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at December 12, 2007 3:21 pm  

  • Just because Mafi's knees are off the deck doesn't mean he is "on his feet" per the laws.

    Look at the segments from 2:11 onward.

    Notice that Mafi makes 1-2 swipes at the ball. The first swipe (2:15 to 2:16), Mafi is not on his feet. However, since both still have forward momentum and are sliding, you probably can / should let this go.

    2:17-2:18 shows the second swipe at ball. Momentum has stopped. Mafi has the ability to get up. Instead, he sprawls (wrestling term), and supports his upper body on Peel, akin to a rugby league tackler.
    So while his knees are up, he is clearly supported by Peel.

    If you are being supported by a player on the ground, you are considered "not on your feet".

    So the penalizable offence occurs there.

    The third swipe at the ball is Mafi on his feet, and in a posture where he can support himself. But the prior offence moots this play.

    Perhaps we are giving Barnesy too much credit here, but I think he got the Penalty call right.

    As for the YC or call/no call of a Penalty Try, well, that's another story.

    By Anonymous Cheyanquí, at December 12, 2007 4:42 pm  

  • Anonymous two posts up, I totally agree that Ref's should make the effort to explain to the players what they've done wrong. It'll be better for everyone involved.

    Now how about next time YOU make the effort and add in a Nickname rather than just posting as Anonymous?? Just makes it a lot easier to have good discussions on here and helps us to get to know one another.

    By Blogger Rugbydump, at December 12, 2007 9:50 pm  

  • I dont see how anyone is disagreeing with this call? He collapses on top of Peel which stop him from offloading the ball to one of his team mates...and THEN gets to his feet. Once he's on his feet he's doing nothing wrong but he's already committed the offence.

    By Anonymous Geraint, at December 13, 2007 9:35 pm  

  • I must concur with The Distinguished Gentleman from Wales

    By Anonymous Cheyanquí, at December 14, 2007 1:16 am  

  • can you please get the clip of delasau scoring his ful field try against the wasps on saturday?

    By Anonymous Nick, at December 15, 2007 9:30 pm  

  • Nick, I've missed most of pro rugby this past fall, but the minute you said:
    "Delasau" and "full field"....

    You got me

    By Anonymous Cheyanquí, at December 16, 2007 5:29 am  

  • Busy weekend here, but we'll try get that Delasau try up in the next couple of days.

    By Blogger Rugbydump, at December 16, 2007 9:37 pm  

  • Its the right call, his knees may be off the ground but he has to be supporting his own weight to be deemed "on his feet". He is supporting his weight on the tackled player, is therefore not on his feet and has no rights to the ball.

    By Anonymous Steamtrain, at February 03, 2008 12:27 pm  

  • Same stupid ref that officiated the All Blacks vs French RWC game. Awesome chase but I think Mafi did nothing wrong and didn't warant a yellow card.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at February 23, 2008 10:46 pm  

  • completly the right call, off his feet, killing the ball, theres nothing wrong with wayne barnes' decision.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at February 25, 2008 12:25 pm  

  • it wasnt at all the right call.. i know the rules say that the tackler has to give a 'moment' for the other player to put the ball on the ground but he didn te know if he was going to pass it.. the rule is not well done on this case.. he could never wait to see if the other player was going to put the ball on the ground or do a pass

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at February 26, 2008 5:21 am  

  • Wow...this scrum halfs are as fast as lightning,but it seems that Mafi is faster...hehe.Great skill to turn him to his back and great speed to catch speedsters like scrum halfs.Well done Lifeimi!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at May 11, 2008 9:36 am  

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