A traffic light signal is used by South Africa coaches to influence their team against Scotland

In the Rugby World Cup 2023 Match of South Africa vs Scotland, Messages can be passed on the field in a variety of ways these days. The South Africa coaches used traffic light signals on the field to influence the team’s decision-making against Scotland, combining ear pieces, water carriers and plain old shouting.

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When the Springboks were awarded a first-half penalty in a good attacking position, the TV cameras panned to the South Africa coaching box where assistant Felix Jones, who is joining Steve Borthwick’s England after the tournament, raised a red traffic light. He then pointed to the posts to indicate he wanted to try.

As a result of his fluctuating fortunes off the tee, Libbok aced the three points after missing an earlier attempt. However, the use of the light certainly caught the eye with the red signal clearly meant to inform on-field captain Siya Kolisi that the powers that be wanted him to take the points on offer.

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Shortly thereafter, a second incident occurred, this time Rassie Erasmus himself had the light in hand, and again South Africa kicked at goal.

Many Rugby World Cup 2023 viewers will not have seen this unique tactic for the first time, but Erasmus is said to have favored it. From the roof of the Free State Stadium in Bloemfontein, he flashed lights when he was coaching the Cheetahs.

Social media users were divided about the use of the light. Some felt it was a smart ploy and effective communication, while others disagreed.

According to one X (formerly Twitter) user, “Definitely a signal to take the 3. Too much like NFL to me! Trust the leaders in the heat of battle. #lettheboysplay”

The tactic is used because crowd noise makes it difficult to be heard, according to South Africa head coach Jacques Nienaber after the game.

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