Questions have been raised over why a member of the Springbok backroom staff was on the pitch during a crucial moment in the third Test between the Lions and South Africa.
In the 70th minute of the match, with the Lions hammering away at the South Africa line, a physiotherapist is seen just yards away from the action, barking instructions at the players.
When Lions prop Mako Vunipola barrels his way over the line only to be held up, she is within touching distance of the action.
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The physio does not appear to treat anyone before walking away from the action when play is halted.
Concerns have been raised by former players, with 84-cap England international Rachael Burford asking: “What is she doing?
Replying to commenters, Burford added: “I’m sure she is a brilliant medic and has an enormous amount of experience, I’m not questioning any of that however not sure why she is on the field of play during live play – when no body is injured?”
Former prop Alex Corbisiero, who helped the Lions win the series against Australia in 2013 said: “Mic’d to the coaches, could be shouting messages to the players? Mental she was allowed to be there.
“I’m pretty sure she’s not allowed to be standing there… usually unable to fire messages on through medics except during breaks in game play, as they can’t enter the field.”
Ex-Northampton Saints lock Christian Day added: “Spotted that too, really poor.”
Rugby is one of the few sports that allows medics to track play on either side of the field, in order to ensure that they can quickly attend to injured players.
However, medics should not enter the field without reason and should only do so to treat players that have gone down with suspected injuries.
Early in the game, referee Mathieu Raynal had to stop a member of the South Africa backroom staff, who had apparently entered the field of play without reason.
Earlier in the week, the Lions raised concerns about the Springboks looking to slow the pace of the game down and facilitate regular stoppages.
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