Donncha O'Callaghan tells us the worst bloody thing about being refereed by Wayne Barnes 3 years ago

Donncha O'Callaghan tells us the worst bloody thing about being refereed by Wayne Barnes

Contentious.

There aren't many other referees in world rugby who get under Irish rugby fans' skin.

Generally, when Wayne Barnes officiates a game involving Ireland there tends to be some level of controversy or feeling of wrongdoing with regards to a particular decision.

Many feel that Barnes is extra stringent on Irish players for whatever reason and that Ireland, more often than not, are on the losing side when he is in charge.

In fact, before the loss to Wales at the weekend, Ireland had lost nine of the 14 games in which Barnes had officiated.

Unfortunately for Joe Schmidt's side, that record increased again on Friday night.

One of the main issues that fans have with Barnes is that he is terrible for nitpicking.

Advertisement

Many felt that Robbie Henshaw's involvement in Rory Best's disallowed try would have been let slide by most other referees and this is something which former Leinster and Ireland star, Kevin McLaughlin, refers to on the latest episode of The Hard Yards.

"Does marginal decisions, he just tends to go against Ireland," McLaughlin said. "Everytime I watch him referee Ireland, I know it's going to be tricky."

McLaughlin also took annoyance with the fact that Barnes did not refer to the TMO for the forward pass in the build up to Wales' first try.

"The fact that he didn't go back and have a look at forward pass for Wales' first try, what do you have to lose by going back to have a look? Look, we can't blame him and Ireland can't blame him, the fact is, Robbie doesn't go in there and we score the try."

Donncha O'Callaghan, also appearing on The Hard Yards, sums it up perfectly when it comes to the English referee.

"Unfortunately, Wayne Barnes...and its always the frustrating thing with Wayne Barnes, he's always right! It's to the letter of the law."

You can listen to the lads discuss Barnes' performance at 28:45 below.