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Jaco Peyper was not considered by World Rugby for selection as an official for the semi-finals of the Rugby World Cup.

The South African referee was pictured with Wales fans after the quarter-final win over France imitating the elbow by France second-row Sebastien Vahaamahina. World Rugby are investigating the incident.

The lock received a straight red for the elbow. Vahaamahina then announced his retirement from the international game.

Peyper has paid the price for the incident with World Rugby confirming they did not consider the South African after the social media storm.

"World Rugby can confirm that the match officials selection committee did not consider Jaco Peyper for selection this weekend," rugby union's governing body said in a statement.

"Peyper recognises that a picture of him with Wales fans, which appeared on social media after the Wales versus France quarter-final, was inappropriate and he has apologised."

Officials

World Rugby went on to announce that Welsh referee Nigel Owens would take charge of Saturday's England-New Zealand match. Ahead of that game England head coach Eddie Jones has accused the New Zealand camp of spying on England training.

France's Romain Poite and Pascal Gauzere are assistant referees with South African Marius Jonker the television match official.

Jerome Garces of France will referee Sunday's Wales-South Africa clash. England's Wayne Barnes and New Zealander Ben O'Keeffe are his assistants and Ben Skeen, also of New Zealand, the TMO.

World Rugby said the selection was "based on merit after a review of performances by World Rugby's match officials selection committee".

Wales coach Warren Gatland said he was aware of the picture of Peyper with Wales fans, the Kiwi coach appeared unconcerned.

"He's had his 50th cap, he's posing with a few fans and he's making a bit of a joke about the incident in the game," Gatland said.

"How people interpret that is up to them. Obviously, the way things are, people like to make mountains out of molehills."

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