\"Declan

Declan Kidney Photo by: Google Images

Ireland rugby coach Declan Kidney supports postponement of RBS Six Nations

\"Declan

Declan Kidney Photo by: Google Images

Ireland coach Declan Kidney was fully supportive of the decision to postpone Saturday night’s Six Nations clash with France at the last minute.

Referee Dave Pearson and French rugby officials have come in for severe criticism after the game was called-off with the teams about to leave the dressing-room.

Temperatures were down to minus seven degrees and the 80,000 fans were already in their seats when referee Pearson took the decision to postpone the game due to the frozen pitch.

“Talking to the referee, it was a really difficult decision to make, but he had the courage to take it. I know what I thought about the ground in that right-hand corner and I can’t criticise him,” said Kidney.

“One particular corner of the pitch was dangerous to play on so the referee took the right decision.

“The players were pumped up for it in the dressing room as the protocol of this competition demands that you prepare fully for the game.

__________
Read More:
More Irish sports news from IrishCentral

Top ten reasons why some Irish have no real clue about America

America’s little people disgusted by Rosie O’Donnell and Chelsea Handler on OWN – VIDEO

___________

“The boys were ready to go but sometimes you have to let your head rule your heart. I am glad we are not talking about a serious injury to one of the players.”

Referee Pearson has been defended by his bosses for making the call.

“Player welfare and safety is the primary concern for the IRB and its match officials,” read the statement.

“Having witnessed and assessed the rapid deterioration of the playing surface between the final pitch inspection and the scheduled kick-off time, and following consultation with the match official team, both coaches and championship organisers, Pearson deemed the pitch unplayable on player welfare grounds.”

RBS 6 Nations Media and Communications manager, Christine Connolly explained on Saturday night: “Unfortunately on the advice of the referee it was decided that it was unplayable.

“He came here yesterday and inspected it under the covers and then again at 7.30pm (French time) this evening and it was playable.

“However, sadly in the 90 minutes after the covers were drawn back it froze over in several areas and was unplayable.”

French coach Philippe Saint-André wanted to play the game. He said: “We would have preferred to play. The changing room was electric, the players were really ready to play but you have to respect the referee’s decision, it’s he who is in charge of players’ safety.”

Ireland fans who travelled for the game were angered by the late postponement after spending thousands on their trip.

French rugby federation president Pierre Camou said: “I’m sad for all the fans who’ve travelled, those who’ve come here from outside Paris and from Ireland.”

__________
Read More:
More Irish sports news from IrishCentral

Top ten reasons why some Irish have no real clue about America

America’s little people disgusted by Rosie O’Donnell and Chelsea Handler on OWN – VIDEO

___________

Ireland’s rugby stars could now face four games in four weeks with the game likely to be replayed on the weekend of March 2nd.

An announcement is expected in Dublin on the refixture with Ireland now likely to play Italy, France, Scotland and English in quick succession.

“Further to a meeting of the Six Nations Council, we can confirm that the postponed RBS 6 Nations France versus Ireland match will not take place this weekend,” said a statement from the IRB.

The proposed March 3 date clashes with a scheduled round of domestic Top 14 games in France.

Top clubs don’t want to lose their international players that weekend and have proposed a June date as an alternative.

COMMENTS

Log in with your social accounts:

Or, log in with your IrishCentral account:

Forgot your password ?

Don't have an account yet? Register now !

Join IrishCentral with your social accounts:


Already have an account ?

Or, sign up for an IrishCentral account below:

By clicking above you are indicating that you have read & agree to our Terms and Privacy Policy.


Make sure we gathered the correct information from you

By clicking above you are indicating that you have read & agree to our Terms and Privacy Policy.


You already have an account on IrishCentral! Please confirm you're the owner.


Our new policy requires our users to save a first and last name. Please update your account: