November 22, 2008

YOU THOUGHT THE SUPER BOWL WAS AN UPSET?:

New Zealand stun Australia to secure World Cup glory (Andy Wilson, November 22 2008, Guardian)

New Zealand produced the most significant upset in the history of international rugby league to secure their first World Cup in the 54-year-old competition's most dramatic final, although it seems destined to be remembered for just as long in Australia for the contribution of Steve Ganson, a video referee from St Helens.

Ganson stunned a 50,000 crowd at Brisbane's Suncorp Stadium by awarding a penalty try to the Kiwis' full-back Lance Hohaia in the 70th minute which effectively sealed the result, as it extended New Zealand's lead from a precarious 22-20 to a far more comfortable eight points.

It was a decision that might euphemistically be described as brave, the sort that Ganson has become renowned for in the Super League over the last decade. Hohaia was bearing down on a high kick from New Zealand's scrum half Nathan Fien when he was tackled off the ball by Australia's wing Joel Monaghan, and although Australia's full-back Billy Slater was coming across in cover, Ganson ruled that Hohaia would have scored the try.

He then had the formality of awarding a scrappy try to the Kiwis' prop Adam Blair to complete a result that nobody had been expecting, denying Australia the seventh consecutive World Cup that had been considered a formality and ending their domination of the tournament that went back to 1975.


The Rugby League Challenge Cup featured nearly as big an upset

Posted by Orrin Judd at November 22, 2008 10:12 AM
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