English rugby fans have exploded at the Television Match Official after being controversially denied a try in the semi-final against the All Blacks.
Eddie Jones' England became the first side into the Rugby World Cup final after a brilliant 19-7 win against New Zealand on Saturday night in Yokohama.
'INCREDIBLE': England 'Flying V' Haka response delights rugby fans
The English side got off to the perfect start against the two-time reigning World Cup champions in Yokohama, with Manu Tuilagi crossing for a try after two minutes.
A penalty goal saw the men in white extend the advantage to 10 points but it could have been even more at the start of the second half.
Ben Youngs thought he'd given England a 15-0 lead when he scurried over the try line after a maul close to the Kiwi line.
Referee Nigel Owens referred the incident to the TMO after the slightest suggestion the ball had gone forward between English hands in the preceding maul.
Owens' original call was to award the try but after reviewing the incident several times, the TMO ruled that the ball had moved ever so slightly forward in the maul before Youngs touched down.
The call looked particularly harsh on England, with video footage painting a less than conclusive picture.
Viewers vented their frustrations on social media, insisting that video technology was ruining the sport, much like the criticism many football fans have about VAR.
"That's a massive call, and a huge moment in the game."— eir Sport (@eirSport) October 26, 2019
45 mins: England 10-0 New Zealand.
England's Ben Youngs has a try ruled out after the TMO rules there was an infringement in the maul.
It's LIVE now on eir sport 1!#ENGvNZL #RWC2019 pic.twitter.com/JS6uRxA66A
That’s a potential match changing decision from the TMO #ENGvsNZ— Michael (@AriboAribo79) October 26, 2019
Getting sick of video technology taking the emotion out of sport, especially when they’ve clearly got that one wrong cancelling out Ben Youngs try
VAR / TMO - killing sport— beerfootballtrance (@Up_The_Gills) October 26, 2019
The TMO ref must be from NZ (or Oz)— Steve Sims (@steversims) October 26, 2019
Look rattled since that early try bro. TMO just saved them aswell because that was a try in my opinion. They don’t like getting a point in this way they playing 🙈— Ricky Mainwaring (@rickmainz1989) October 26, 2019
All the lads saying “we need to look at how rugby uses the TMO to improve VAR” are awfully quiet. Shambles.— AJH (@AdamJoey) October 26, 2019
Governing body be doing well to salvage this for their cash cow despite more bias TMO calls— Barry O'Donnell (@bod_uherald) October 26, 2019
Big TMO call against England that one.— Mick Cleary (@MickClearyTel) October 26, 2019
Your tmo's have ruined this game!!— Matt Jones🤘 (@JONESYBISH) October 26, 2019
England's pain was compounded when Ardie Savea capitalised on a lineout error to cross for New Zealand's first try of the match.
That made it a six-point ball game but any hopes of a seemingly inevitable Kiwi comeback were soon dashed.
George Ford stepped up superbly in place of the injured Owen Farrell to boot England into a 12-point advantage courtesy of a pair of penalty goals.
Ford even had the luxury of missing the chance to kick England further in front as the underdogs expertly saw out the remainder of the match to deny the All Blacks the chance at an unprecedented three straight World Cups.
England dominant from the outset
The result on Saturday night ends the All Blacks' 18-match winning streak at the tournament after last being beaten in the 2007 quarter-finals by France.
The victory sweeps England into their fourth final and first since 2007. They will seek their second cup against South Africa or Wales after their 2003 victory and are still the only northern hemisphere country to triumph.
England scored after 90 seconds through centre Tuilagi and built their lead through brilliant goalkicking by recalled flyhalf Ford.
New Zealand, who had won 15 of the teams' past 16 meetings, managed only a gifted try to flanker Ardie Savea.
After defying officials and lining up against the Haka in a V formation, England backed it up once the whistle had sounded with Tuilagi's try after a sustained, high-paced assault that swept the width of the pitch.
That set the template for the half, with dual playmakers Owen Farrell and Ford full of speed and creativity. The All Blacks, who hardly ventured into England's 22, would have been relieved to reach halftime only 10-0 down after Ford kicked a late penalty and a Sam Underhill try was ruled out by the TMO.
The only previous time New Zealand had failed to score in the first half of a World Cup match was when they were beaten by Australia in the 1991 semis.
A year ago, they came back from 15-0 down at Twickenham to triumph 16-15.
England piled on the pressure immediately in the second half, only to be denied a second try by the TMO.
A Ford penalty made it 13-0 as New Zealand continued to make rare mistakes. But they were invited back into the game when, for the first time, England's lineout went wrong and Jamie George threw the ball straight into the arms of Savea, who fell over the line.
England hit back immediately after a huge hit on Jordie Barrett by Sam Underhill forced a knock-on and, from the subsequent attack, New Zealand offended on their line again and Ford kicked another penalty to make it 16-7.
Ford, taking over kicking duties after Farrell had been hit hard in the first half, added another to give England breathing space and, led by the extraordinary Maro Itoje, they continued to tackle strongly as the All Blacks became desperate but ran out of time.