Manu Tuilagi smashes Tom Williams

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Trinh-Duc sets up Harinordoquy try

Wales vs England 1999

Greg Holmes great hit on Francois Louw

Thursday, March 04, 2010

Brian Moore's flawless refereeing debut

Outspoken commentator Brian Moore recently decided to put his whistle where his mouth is, passing the RFU’s Entry Level Referee Award, thus qualifying him as a ref, leading to his rather interesting debut recently.

Fifteen years after retirement, the now 48 year old former British & Irish Lions and England hooker got his boots back on in a bid to experience what it’s like to be the man in the middle.

"I'd got into an argument over the refereeing of the front row. I reckoned I'd been a hooker in over 75,000 scrums during my career so I knew what I was talking about," explained Moore.

"Then the questioner asked how many front rows I'd ever refereed, and he suggested I take the ELRA course to find out what it was like. So I thought 'yes, I'll do it'," he added.

So having completed the course, he recently got out there for his first match in charge, tights and all. His task was to ref a match between Rosslyn Park Nomads and a London Scottish XV, but things didn’t go all to plan, as he explained in his regular column.

"As the teams lined up for the kick-off I checked both captains were ready and with a frisson of excitement blew the whistle.

"What followed was, by common assent, a flawless demonstration of officiating. I made no mistakes and the players, other officials and crowd had nothing to complain about – as a referee you cannot realistically expect positive acclamation.

"The game flowed and Park scored a scintillating try with the sort of handling that unfortunately escapes England's backs all too often.

"Yes, for the 2½ minutes I was on the field I was brilliant; until my right calf tore and it felt like I had been shot by some embittered and jealous member of the fraternity, envious at all the misplaced attention my foray to the dark side had attracted.

"I could only hobble off with the laughter ringing in my ears; my embarrassment complete and pride demolished.

"Lessons I perhaps didn't learn – nobody likes a smart-arse, and get fit before you do this."

Time: 0:56
Note: You can read his full column here.



  • Nothing wrong with a perfect game

    By Anonymous Chris J, at March 04, 2010 5:48 pm  

  • 2nd,
    hate that guy

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at March 04, 2010 5:58 pm  

  • This guy is the only commentator who actually knows something about what happens when a scrum collapses. Better commentator than most commentators.

    I hope he refs international games.

    By Anonymous Tony, at March 04, 2010 6:23 pm  

  • I'm sure he knows what he's talking about but i still hope he gives up commentating.

    Cant stand to listen to him moan about an England performance for another 80 minutes. I had to mute my Tv last time.

    By Anonymous The Inside Shoulder, at March 04, 2010 7:11 pm  

  • i hate him also, how can he be a good commentator all he does is whine, i mean i want him to comment on the game not his flipping opinion every 2 seconds. also i feel sorry for the bloke who always seems to have to commentate with him, he must be like stfu. i also mute the tv when he commentate's


    By Anonymous Anonymous, at March 04, 2010 7:57 pm  

  • Hah, there's a reason refs weren't fatty forwards when they used to play. Way to go, Brian Moore.

    It does get ridiculous hearing him moan and whine when England are penalized, but at least you know he's just being a bitch, and the referee made the right call.

    By Anonymous steven, at March 04, 2010 9:08 pm  

  • hate this bloke with a passion, really ruins rugby games with all his arrogant whining, it does my head in.
    Do love the other commenter the bbc have atm tho, makes it just bareable to listen too, but all too often i also find myself muting the england matches

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at March 04, 2010 11:52 pm  

  • People hate Brian Moore because he is smart, opinionated and English. Look, he's no Bill McLaren, but then who is?

    If you put aside your hatred of the English for one second, Moore actually knows what he is talking about and in fact I don't find him biased at all (unlike Jonathan Davies) He spends most of the time criticizing England when they deserve it, which is frequently!

    Moore played for England for 8 years and went on 2 Lions tours, starting in 4 Lions tests, winning 3 of them. All this in the amateur days whhile working as a solicitor and travelling to training after a full days work.

    Moore deserves respect and he knows what he is talking about. He has achieved more than any of the whiners above will in their lives, of that we can be sure.

    Ps. This is not Brian Moore or Briane Moore's mom.

    By Anonymous JPM, at March 05, 2010 12:30 am  

  • ^ So he had a good rugby career and knows what he's talking about. That doesn't automatically make him a good commentator though.

    By Anonymous Kearney for tests, at March 05, 2010 1:45 am  

  • I agree with JPM. like Jonathon Davies, says it as it is!!! For those who mute their TV (pathetic).....try watching New Zealand commentators on sky. Now they ARE biased!!

    By Blogger Alexander, at March 05, 2010 2:06 am  

  • "like Jonathon Davies, says it as it is!!!"

    With exception to pronouncing Harinordoquy's name right, I suppose...

    By Anonymous smif, at March 05, 2010 4:09 am  

  • Well compared to Eddie Butler Brian Moore is fanatastic. Butler is constantly telling you exactly the opposite of what happens: "A great kick, it's three points to ....oh errrr.....it's wide...oh" etc etc..

    By Anonymous kol, at March 05, 2010 5:11 am  

  • The first time I heard him commentate I found it pretty comical tbh. I'm amazed he's lasted this long actually - that strange lisp (or whatever it is) is ridiculous and sounds terrible on an international broadcast.

    I personally don't mind him TOO much I guess, but I certainly wouldn't miss him if he stopped commentating.. and became a pro ref :P

    By Anonymous FrankyH, at March 05, 2010 8:18 am  

  • and that, is a gay slap...... genius!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at March 05, 2010 10:42 am  

  • Ok, lets put this into perspective. I'd rather listen to Brian Moore than Fatty Barnes any day of the week. He's one of the few commentators who will be critical of the England team but actually pinpoint his issues. Yes, he's fairly patriotic and he'd like to see England win, but listen to commentators from most regions and they are the same.

    Davies is a legend. He sometimes gets a bit caught up in the game but at least he's passionate. Better than monotone Guscott, the only man more effective than sleeping tablets.

    Also, as a bit of respect, after complaining about the refereeing of scrums for ages, he actually has the decency to go and see what its like to referee a game (well 3 minutes...).

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at March 05, 2010 11:25 am  

  • This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at March 05, 2010 12:38 pm  

  • Brian More you are a legend!

    I love you. If they don't want you commentating in england there's plenty of room in wales!!

    Come on down to china town!!

    By Anonymous Abs7, at March 05, 2010 1:35 pm  

  • As a player I thought he was overrated,but he has been on the money as a Commentator,the refs have no idea whats going on in the front row, just a lottery...

    From a Nw Zealander

    By Blogger kiwiray, at March 05, 2010 4:52 pm  

  • Love Brian Moore (and I am a Scot) - hated him as a player yes. He is utterly entertaining and although biased towards England often quite objective actually - he applauds good rugby and is fair.

    I love that he only will call James Haskell, Brand Haskell after they had a little spat. His rage against Italy a few years ago was priceless. I like him and think he's great. :)


    By Blogger Alasdair, at March 05, 2010 5:37 pm  

  • This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at March 05, 2010 7:21 pm  

  • I would actually like to see other commentators pick up a whistle to see what it's like to referee ANY game. Brian Moore's short stint as a ref underscores another point about refereeing: you do need a baseline level of fitness to do it well.

    By Blogger Nursedude, at March 05, 2010 9:05 pm  

  • Totally agree with JPM!!!

    and all those saying he is one sided.....what the fuck are you on about?

    He is nuts about england, he played for them and its his home country, but havent you heard him going mad about how they play?

    he is the first to criticise their performances.

    .....sigh, all one eyed people again i suppose...

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at March 05, 2010 9:17 pm  

  • ...If we're going to go on about whingers, who's the Scottish commentator. Last match I saw him commentate was 80 minutes of whinging, complaining about the Italians infringing and then applauding the scots for an identical play.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at March 05, 2010 10:39 pm  

  • I really like to listen to Moore's commentary. I'm Irish. Sure, he's opinionated and can be quite biased, but at least he's interesting and can be quite funny. He can also be very critical of England when they are playing badly.

    Keep it up, Brian.

    By Anonymous John, at March 10, 2010 2:49 pm  

  • Brian moore is by far the worst rugby commentator in television. insted of doing his job and commentating on the game, he whines the entire game about anything that doesnt go englands way. Shame on the BBC for letting the arrogant, biased man say one word on air, let alone a full 80 mintues

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at March 21, 2010 1:52 pm  

  • Moore is closer to 'FanZone' than commentator. I imagine him sitting in a deep sofa, occasionally jumping up to shout at the TV and spill his beer on himself. Clearly he is just as well suited to refereeing.

    By Blogger Wineometer, at April 01, 2010 4:10 pm  

  • lots of people on here moaning about the fact that brian moore moans too much. Says it all really.

    Him and eddie butler are the best commentry duo... across all sports... ever!

    By Blogger stevis, at April 05, 2010 3:09 pm  

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