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World Cup refs 'three shithouse decisions per game' KPI a success

NEWSDESK: World Rugby officials revealed tournament referees are making more shithouse decisions than ever before - and this time it's by design.

Referees boss Dominic Blazer-Stain revealed RWC has tasked world cup referees with making three or more clearly shithouse decisions per game - with severe consequences for those that fall short.

"Our analysis shows three shithouse decisions per match drives the game forward, our refs are very clear on what's expected.

"Post-match reviews clearly identify which decisions have attained the shithouse bar. We support referees that are struggling through the TMO, as you saw in Ireland Japan."

In a sport notorious for endless fucking tinkering with the rules, World Rugby is now relying on its officials to leave fans angry and confused.

"The metrics show decisions sitting between crap and shithouse drive social media talkability, with massive spikes on Twitter. We only ask they use the '#shithousedesicionsrwc2019broughttoyoubysocietegenerale' tag.

"I mean, criticising referees is all Michael Cheika has got, personal-branding wise. Take that away and you're just left with a big forehead," said Blazer-Stain.

RWC are confident shithouse decisions will drive interest throughout the tournament. "As we progress, you're going to see player suspension for knockout matches become a factor, which  will add real interest for fans," said Blazer-Stain.

Thanks for reading - Richard
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The week's best NZ sport content

The 1014 rugby chaps look at the All Blacks' spine and why we shouldn't expect too many surprises for the big games [Stuff]

Dana Johannsen talks to Katrina Rore about coming in from the cold to clean up three major titles in a year [Stuff]

Steve Deane goes long to look at the serious growth in interest and investment in women's sport, and why it's not going anywhere [Locker Room]

Land in Pukekohe is under pressure, from developers wanting to build badly-needed housing to growers protecting some of our best soil - Steve Kilgallon looks at where this leaves sport venues [Stuff]

What's the future of baseball stadiums? Not NZ-specific, but paints a thought provoking picture of connecting communities and sporting events through design. Closest equivalent here is the Basin Reserve, where the game feels like it's being played smack in the middle of all the hustle and bustle (yes, including fire engines) [SB Nation]

Video nasty

Law And Order with chickens. Probably the greatest video I'll ever share.

Long read

What it was like to work in the Silicon Valley bubble in 2012, when startup bros were gods and many of the issues we're facing now were just getting built [New Yorker]


We really enjoyed TV3's The Gulf, which wrapped up on Monday night. If you can get past the theme tune (a mashup of every crime drama theme ever but especially Big Little Lies), it's a really engaging and well-acted crime drama, that turns good old Waiheke into a moody hotbed of dark secrets and dodgy characters. Even more than it is IRL. Catch it on demand.

Selected weekend fixtures 

  • Saturday night is the pick of the RWC this week, with England v Argentina on at 9pm, followed by Japan v Samoa at 11.30pm, it's all on Spark Sport
  • And before that, you can watch the Otago v Canterbury shield challenge at 7.35pm, it's on SKY

Bring back the gif 

You, adjusting to daylight saving time.
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