It's one of the oldest tricks in the book - a rugby kicker sneaking a closer attempt.

But video of All Blacks fullback Beauden Barrett seemingly moving the ball closer to the posts during Saturday's 16-16 draw with the Springboks has led to some outraged South African fans.

South African rugby fans were less than happy when footage was posted on Twitter of the All Blacks fullback lining up his successful penalty attempt in the 48th minute at Westpac Stadium.

Referee Nic Berry appears to make a mark and point at the posts a metre inside the South African 22m line - but as he turns his back to talk to All Blacks skipper Kieran Read, Barrett toes the ball a metre further ahead. It's unclear whether it was intentional or not.


But he eventually tees the ball up closer than the initial penalty. It could be argued on the angle, a closer kick would have made the attempt more difficult and that the difference between a 20 metre or a 21 metre attempt should be negligible to a test kicker.

The referee either didn't notice or have any issue with where the kick was being taken from.

If anything untoward has occurred, on a scale of illegal things to do on the rugby field this would rank well down the end of cheeky over cheating.

However passionate South African rugby fans who viewed the footage on Twitter were unhappy, to say the least.

"Trademark of All Black Rugby. Cannot play to the rules. Must always get away with something illegal," one fan said.

"Final score South Africa 16 New Zealand 14, they should disallow that kick," said John Pothier (@johnpothier), seemingly unaware that penalties are worth three points.

"All Blacks had been veeeery subtle. Captain is involved. It's like a little sandpaper in the pocket. There are many ways to kill a springbok," @barrybateman said.

"Is it at all possible that Kieran Read is in on the deal - he keeps the ref busy while Barrett changes the position off the ball?," Pieter van der Spuy (@PvdS13) said on Twitter.


One fan went as far as saying the footage has hurt New Zealand's sporting reputation helped by Kane Williamson's attitude at the Cricket World Cup.

"NZ very quickly losing the goodwill that their cricketers earned," Chris Smart
(@cndsmart) said.

While another claimed that Barrett, a two time World Rugby player of the year, should be banned from future awards.

"Hey @WorldRugby does sportsmanship come into the equation when you're assembling the shortlist for World Rugby Player of the year? Because if it does then @beaudenbarrett should be omitted from any future award nominations with blatant unnecessary cheating like this. #BanBarrett," Philip O'Reilly (@philthrill69) said.

Barrett finished the test with two from four from the tee.