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Owens ill-advised to keep on tweeting

HOWEVER you feel about Nigel Owens' fateful scrum decision which set up New Zealand's 22-19 victory in Christchurch last Saturday, the Welsh referee comes across as a decent bloke.

And a courageous one, as he proved when 'coming out' in 2007 and speaking so candidly about the trials of "living a lie" while working in such a machismo sport as rugby.

However, you have to question the wisdom of Owens (right) maintaining a Twitter account, where he has been not surprisingly inundated with abusive messages since his controversial call last Saturday.

It is hardly a secret that the internet is a haven for the hysterical, and for a high-profile international referee to engage with gremlins sniping from cover is a lose-lose situation for Owens.

Match officials have a tough enough job as it is without opening themselves up to this sort of online drivel.

Irish Independent