Jimmy Gopperth praised for 'world class' act of sportsmanship
His actions were praised by pundits, ex-players and fans alike
Wasps star Jimmy Gopperth has been praised for an act of "world class" sportsmanship during his side's game against Bristol Bears on Friday night.
Gopperth displayed a rare degree of honesty that surprised pundits, ex-players and fans alike as his side went in search of the win.
With Wasps already trailing by three points in the 55th minute, Bristol appeared to go over for another try through Joe Joyce.
— Rugby on BT Sport (@btsportrugby) March 12, 2021
Referee Karl Dickson wasn't so sure on the grounding, so intended to go to the TMO for clarity. But he didn't need to do that.
Jimmy Gopperth told him it had been legitimately grounded, to which the ref replied "Thank you Jimmy for your honesty".
It would have been all too easy to keep quiet and hope the camera angle wasn't clear, in the hope Bristol would have been denied their second try of the night.
This gesture of great sportsmanship received high praise from those watching at home, including some notable stalwarts of the game.
Gloucester veteran Matt Banahan said it was the "Best piece of sportsmanship" he had seen "in any sport for a long time", adding the gesture was "world class".
— matt banahan (@mattbanahan1) March 12, 2021
Former England hooker Brian Moore was similarly impressed, writing on Twitter:
Bravo Jimmy Gopperth of Wasps for telling the referee that Bristol had scored and he didn't need to go to the TMO.
— Brian Moore (@brianmoore666) March 12, 2021
Fans were unanimously in agreement, with one in particular claiming it was "a lesson to everyone on how to play the game".
Bristol Bears went on to win the game 37-20, adding further tries through Niyi Adeolokun and Chris Vui.
The result put the West Country men 11 points clear at the top of the Gallagher Premiership and was their first win over Wasps in 15 years.