Wallabies coach Michael Cheika: Refs have been spooked, Latest Football News - The New Paper

Wallabies coach Michael Cheika: Refs have been spooked

Australia coach Michael Cheika said Rugby World Cup referees had been "spooked" by a crackdown on high tackles after the Wallabies were beaten 29-25 by Wales in a nail-biting Pool D clash yesterday.

Clearly still seething about winger Reece Hodge's three-match ban for a high tackle in Australia's opening victory over Fiji, Cheika let rip after the match, his sense of injustice fuelled by the news that England's Piers Francis had escaped suspension for a high shot.

"I just don't know the rules any more, honestly," he fumed, given the gentlest of pushes to air his grievances.

"Our guy makes that tackle he gets suspended - the English guy gets off...

"The referees all seem spooked - everyone seems worried about so much.

"I'm not sure why, the players aren't worried. The administrators are spooking the referees and they're becoming ultra-cautious about everything.

"It's affecting everything else on the field."

Hodge became the first player cited and banned in Japan after clattering into Fiji's Peceli Yato during their 39-21 win the previous weekend.

Following their defeat, Australia look set to face Pool C favourites England in the quarter-finals. - AFP

Christian Coleman wins 100m, dismisses Michael Johnson's jibes

Christian Coleman hit back at US sprinting legend Michael Johnson after powering to a brilliant 100m victory at the World Championships yesterday morning (Singapore time).

Coleman clinched the first major outdoor title of his career, clocking a world-leading personal best of 9.76 sec at the Khalifa Stadium in Doha, Qatar, ahead of Justin Gatlin (9.89) and Andre de Grasse (9.90).

The win cemented Coleman's status as the man to beat at next year's Tokyo Olympics.

In the eyes of Johnson, however, Coleman has already forfeited the right to be the icon of track and field after the missed drugs test controversy before the championships.

Coleman, however, shot back: "Michael Johnson doesn't pay my bills or sign my cheques. So I don't really care what he has to say."

Coleman was able to compete in Doha only after the case against him was withdrawn due to a technical loophole.

Meanwhile, Yusuke Suzuki won Japan's first world title in the 50km race walk yesterday with his 4hr 4min 20 sec effort.

Later in the day, the start of the women's 20km race walk was delayed due to heat and humidity. The temperature was around 39 deg C. - AFP, REUTERS