Farrell spurned an easy three points by not keeping a close eye on the clock
It was a game of two records for the England captain. But the Owen Farrell shot clock fail undoubtedly caused more of a stir than the simple three points he scored in the 18th minute to surpass Jonny Wilkinson as England’s all-time record points scorer.
Deep into the second half with England under the pump against an inspired Samoa, Farrell had the chance to take an easy three points but lost complete track of the time, leaving referee Andrew Brace no choice but to deny him the chance to kick the penalty.
It was the first time we’ve seen a player be timed out since the kicking shot clock was introduced. It’s hard to find an excuse for Farrell given his attempt was virtually in front of the posts and therefore the big screen.
The time limit for conversions is 90 seconds while for penalty kicks it is 60 seconds or a minute.
It seemed the 32-year-old took a very long time to tee up the ball, with fewer than 30 seconds remaining on the clock before he had even got into his usual pre-kick routine.
Farrell’s next kick at goal came after replacement scrum-half Danny Care raced under the posts unchallenged to give England the lead in the 73rd minute. It was another simple attempt and when Farrell bisected the posts, his effort was met with loud ironic cheers from the crowd at the Stade Pierre-Mauroy in Lille.
Farrell’s initial blunder, understandably, caused a stir on social media.
One Twitter/X user wrote: “Owen Farrell failing the shot clock is objectively hilarious.”
Another added: “This is honestly the worst I’ve ever seen England. How the hell is Owen Farrell not aware of the shot clock.”