18 Aug 2013

New scrum calls a lottery

1:21 pm on 18 August 2013

Rugby's new scrum calls produced a first-night lottery according to Wallabies coach Ewen McKenzie and All Blacks counterpart Steve Hansen admitted they created another issue.

The revised calls of 'crouch, bind, set' were on display in a high-profile match in Australia for the first time in Saturday's Bledisloe Cup and Rugby Championship match at Sydney's ANZ Stadium.

Both camps predicted potential teething problems in the leadup to the game and they were proven correct.

It threatened to become a shemozzle when only one of the first six scrums was completed.

South African referee Craig Joubert dished out penalties for crooked scrum feeds and collapses.

Wallabies halfback Will Genia was pinged for a crooked feed into the first scrum, but his New Zealand counterpart Aaron Smith appeared to get away with the same offence a few seconds later.

Joubert was heard to utter the word "perfect" on one of those rare early occasions when a scrum was completed.

Hansen says the referees are being very, very vigilant on the scrum feeds and once the teams get that sorted out and the halfbacks put the ball in straight, they'll be fine.

The All Blacks coach says there were two sets of halfbacks out there who, every time there was a scrum, were very reluctant to put the ball in because they didn't want to be yellow-carded.

Wallabies captain and lock James Horwill says it was a feeling out process for everyone, the referee included.