It's one of the more infamous moments in the long history between the All Blacks and the Springboks but lock Chris Jack has offered a new spin.

It's 16 years to the day since Springboks fan Pieter van Zyl ran onto the field and tackled referee Irish David McHugh during a test in Durban.

Richie McCaw brought down van Zyl who ran onto the field while a scrum was being set. He eventually left the field with a bloody nose, while McHugh also departed with a dislocated shoulder.

Talking to Radio Sport about the incident, Jack came clean in admitting that he and teammate Dave Hewitt may have caused the injury to the ref.


"I just thought it was their second-five coming into talk to the referee or halfback about something. And then I popped my head up and there's this big fat bugger on the referee. A bit of a shock," the 67-test veteran told Radio Sport's Jason Pine.

"We got a bit of a surprise and then we saw AJ Venter and Richie McCaw on top of someone. So myself and Dave Hewitt saw the referee under there and saw what was going on and we tried to pull the poor referee out and I think we may have dislocated his shoulder," Jack added.

"Which eventually won us the game because we got a new referee and refereed a bit different and we went onto win."

The All Blacks won the clash 30-23 with English linesman Chris White taking over the referee duties.

Jack joked that McHugh seemed to hold a grudge if he came across him in later games.
"We started pulling him out and he started squealing a little bit. Games after that I went to shake his hand and he wouldn't give me the time of day but he was all over Richie, so he obviously held a wee grudge against me for pulling him out."

Jack also busted the myth that McCaw was the one who punched van Zyl

"Richie McCaw has been lauded as a hero for punching the guy but you might have to look at that again and ID the actual puncher and see what actually happened," Jack said, hinting at South African great Venter being the one who did the damage to van Zyl's nose.