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McCaw slams lack of Hartley action

New Zealand captain Richie McCaw last night criticised the inconsistency of rugby's judicial system after England hooker Dylan Hartley escaped disciplinary action.

Hartley crashed into McCaw with a forearm challenge in the second half of the All Blacks' 26-16 victory at Twickenham on Saturday, but citing commissioner John West decided to take no further action, while All Blacks hooker Keven Mealamu was on Tuesday night hit with a four-week ban after being cited for headbutting Lewis Moody.

"It's a little surprising. That's the biggest frustration as a player - the inconsistency," said McCaw.

"I don't like to be bitching and moaning about it - that's not the way I am - but all players would like to see a level of consistency.

"With that incident I'm surprised he (Hartley) wasn't up. I don't know whether the ref saw it or not but I certainly made it known to him that I'd been hit. I don't like people to take cheap shots - that annoys me."

All Blacks lock Brad Thorn saw Hartley career into McCaw and shoved the England hooker to the turf, sparking a melee.

"I think you saw my reaction and Brad's reaction in the field, what we thought about it. You don't like those things happening - that's not the game of rugby," McCaw added.

"You have to put your faith in the people that make those decisions. He's obviously decided it wasn't worthy."

McCaw insisted the All Blacks are not targeted by disciplinary officials when on tour in Britain and Ireland but he said: "You've got to be extra squeaky clean.

"You just can't afford to get yourself in a position where the citing officer's going to have a look because more often than not you end up in front of the judiciary."


From Belfast Telegraph