My god this is fantastic

A Belgian rugby team racked up a cricket score and then some after a referee’s late arrival caused chaos for the opposition with Royal Kituro running out 356-3 winners against Soignies in the country’s top division.

Royal Kituro racked up no less than 56 tries – 38 of which were converted – while Soignies managed a solitary drop goal in what must be one of the most one-sided contests on record.

Soignies’s problems started early and when the referee failed to turn up on time a number of players got back on the team bus, assuming the match was off.

The official finally arrived however – more than an hour late – and the 16 remaining Soignies players needed to contest the match to secure the losing point on offer rather than forfeit and come away with nothing.

The video footage available suggests Soignies’ hearts were not really in it while a Kituro spokeswoman said their opposition “didn’t really play”.

The best bit?

The Soignies president, Guy Calomme, was brutal in assessment, describing the result as catastrophic but the efforts of the 16 brave souls was not for nothing – they remain in third place, one point above Kituro, albeit with a points difference of minus 264.

And that bloke who scored the drop goal? Almost worth going all the way to Belgium just to shake his hand and buy him a drink. No, really, respect for even bothering to try and score.

15 thoughts on “My god this is fantastic”

  1. bloke (not) in spain

    Not having a clue or even the slightest interest in Ruby but was always under the impression a Rugby team was 15.
    So what was the problem? Inability to count?

  2. B (n) in S

    Obviously somebody was counting. If he mis-counted though I don’t suppose anyone noticed. I guess we’ll never know.

  3. > and the 16 remaining Soignies players needed to contest

    Remaining 16!!!?? My rugby team’s over the moon if we can scrape 15 players together!

  4. If the 16 were all backs you might have a bit of trouble getting possession. And if they were mainly front five forwards you might have trouble using it. And if a few of them were mere children brought along to be benchwarmers ….

    Still, I’m amazed at any side racking up 356 points: that’s 4.45 points a minute. Did they decide not to waste time kicking conversions?

  5. We were talking in the office about this.

    A colleague who plays Sunday league football says it’s common for teams to turn up short of players. There’s a recognition that it could happen to any team (players aren’t professional and have last minute things crop up) so there’s an unwritten rule that you don’t take the piss if playing against an understrength team and scores are limited to a “respectable” level, say 5-0.

    Seems pretty sensible to me.

  6. None of the numbers make sense. Which shouldn’t matter but the Guardian plumbs the same level of incompetence when it reports real wars.

  7. GlenDorran – I’ve been in matches where one team was short, so some of the opposition joined them to balance things up. That was cricket, though.

  8. The story’s been badly garbled here. They even managed to get the club president’s first name wrong (it’s Yves, Guy is not even close).

    What seems to have happened ( according to the local tv station, who at least interviewed the home team’s president) is that the ref was nowhere to be seen at 3 PM when the game was supposed to kick off. The visitors assumed that this meant the game was off. A replacement referee arrived around an hour later, at which point several visiting players (and their coach) had already left. Nevertheless, the ref decided that the game had to be played, so the remaining Soignies players took the field to avoid a possible fine and point deduction* but refused to compete in protest.

    *and not to take the losing point on offer, there is no such thing in Belgian rugby.

  9. So Much for Subtlety

    I think the Canadian Football Federation decided that any under-16 game that ended up with a grossly disproportionate score would be counted as a defeat for the winner. That is, the better team would lose by default.

    Which makes you wonder if anyone tried to lose badly on purpose.

    There is a lovely bit of Youtube footage which shows two Caribbean teams playing. One of them needs to win by at least two goals to make it to the World Cup but they are winning by only one goal. So their coach tells them to score an own goal so that they will go into a penalty shoot out. Watching the slow realisation that one team is trying for an own goal and hence the other needs to defend both ends is amusing.

  10. GlenDorran: I’ve played for opposition teams who turned up short of front row to prevent uncontested scrums, which are an abomination unto the Lord.

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