England Rugby Team Fined After Forming V-Shape During New Zealand Haka
The England rugby team have been fined for adopting a V-shaped formation during New Zealand's haka before their World Cup semi-final clash, according to The Guardian.
World Rugby regulations stipulate that opposition players cannot cross the halfway line during the Maori war dance, which six of the England players did.
.@EnglandRugby's incredible response to an intense @AllBlacks Haka#ENGvNZL #RWC2019 #WebbEllisCup pic.twitter.com/pXOw7v01df
- Rugby World Cup (@rugbyworldcup) October 26, 2019
It is reported that the team have been fined a four-figure sum, but less than the £2,500 France were forced to pay after adopting a similar tactic prior to the 2011 World Cup final, as on this occasion almost the entire squad were beyond the halfway line.
The regulations breached by England are part of a 'cultural ritual protocol' introduced by the sport's governing body in 2007 after France ended up within spitting distance of the New Zealand team.
Footage of England's stand off with New Zealand during the haka went viral on social media, with fans posting stills of England captain Owen Farrell - stood at the centre of the 'V' - smirking across at the opposition as they performed their cultural ritual.
Speaking about the tactic, Farrell said: "We knew we had to be in a radius behind them. We wanted to not just stand there and let them come at us. We wanted to be respectful but we didn't just want to stand in a flat line."
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The bold move is believed to have been the brainchild of England's head coach Eddie Jones, who went on to see his side overcome the mighty All Blacks 19-7 in a tense semi-final at Yokohama's International Stadium.
Following the match, he said: "What we've done is earn another week in the comp which is great. I thought our tactical discipline was great, our defensive work rate was good. I thought when we had opportunities to attack, we attacked well.
"You want to go right to the death and we're in the death now. We've got another week to enjoy ourselves and work as a team. Our players made a commitment to each other that they'd enjoy the World Cup and I think we're seeing that.
"Whenever you play against New Zealand, you're never happy. You might beat them on the scoreboard but you never really beat them. They kept coming at us and we needed to dig deep and a find a bit extra.
"We've come here to be the world's best and we haven't done that yet, so that's where we need to go."
Featured Image Credit: PA