Referee Ben Whitehouse has caused quite a stir in a recent United Rugby Championship match after Dragons head of performance Dan Baugh was seen to physically grab ahold of the referee’s shirt during a heated confrontation.
The issue arose as Whitehouse was about to view footage of Mat Protheroe’s illegal tackle on Will Reed which would eventually be ruled as a red card offence. Baugh was deemed to have been far too vocal for Whitehouse’s liking, which led to the coach being removed from waterboy duties.
Whitehouse: “Dan, Dan, Dan, Dan, come here. You ever shout at me, no, listen to me very clearly. You ever talk to me and shout at me like that again and you will be in the stand.”
Baugh: “I’m talking to my players. Ben, I can talk to my players.”
It was then that the controversial incident happened.
Whitehouse: “Don’t touch me,”
Whitehouse [to the official on the sideline]: “This man stays off the field from now on. He does not come on the field again, Dan Baugh. Thank you.
“Can you just make sure that the team manager does not let that man back on the field, thank you. We will speak about it after the game.”
Baugh did stay off the pitch for the remainder of the match, involving himself in player warm-ups instead.
Dragons head coach, Dai Flanagan after the game: “I was up in the gantry trying to figure things out and all I heard was that Dan couldn’t come back onto the field. I will look into it and try to speak to Ben.”