Statement by IRB Referees Manager Paddy O’Brien on Alain Rolland’s ordering off of Wales captain Sam Warburton during the RWC 2011 semi-final at Eden Park on 15 October:
‘Alain Rolland’s decision to issue a red card was absolutely correct in Law and in keeping with the clear instructions that match officials have received in recent years regarding dangerous tackling.
‘Alain is a highly experienced referee and had a clear view of the incident, which enabled him to make an accurate and instant decision.
‘Player welfare is paramount and Unions, teams and match officials are all aware of the responsibility to eradicate dangerous play. This message was reiterated as recently as the week before Rugby World Cup 2011 kicked off when we hosted briefings at a workshop with match officials and coaches.’