3 Apr 2010

Controversial draw between Hurricanes and Crusaders

10:34 am on 3 April 2010

The Hurricanes Super 14 rugby coach Colin Cooper says he'll speak with referees boss Lyndon Bray, after two controversial calls contributed to his side's 26-all draw with the Crusaders in Wellington.

Referee Jonathan Kaplan referred a possible Crusaders try in the 85th minute to the video referee - but he only asked for a reason not to award the five-pointer - rather than whether the ball had been grounded.

That tied up the game and put the Hurricanes' finals hopes on life support.

Kaplan maintains he could see the ball grounded even though the video referee couldn't, and he was merely checking for any double movement.

Cooper also highlighted officials earlier missing what he claimed was an illegal quick throw-in from Andy Ellis for the Crusaders' second try.

The Crusaders captain Richie McCaw is relieved after his hooker Ti'i Paulo's late try salvaged the draw.

McCaw says with time up and the scoreline against them you think the worst so he's happy, and he concedes his side's probably a bit lucky to escape with the draw.

Contrasting kicking spells from two All Blacks had a huge say in the result.

Crusaders first-five eighth Dan Carter, who passed 1,000 Super Rugby points during the first half, missed the conversion of Paulo's controversial equaliser.

Outscored three tries to two, the boot of Piri Weepu had put the Hurricanes in front until that point with four penalties.