There are certain occasions in sport where the result is everything. What happens along the way to achieving it hardly matters. There are no extra points for entertainment value.

Such an event is a World Cup final, so to judge South Africa’s win on the grounds that it was just one long grind would encourage accusations of sour grapes.

But for TV audiences or fans who had spent a fortune travelling halfway across the globe, it was not unreasonable to expect something more than a kicking competition.

When the first 30 points come from ten penalties, without even a hint that one of the teams might actually score a try, then you have to admire the reporters and TV commentary team for their efforts in trying to make the final sound and look remotely exciting.

By the time the Springboks actually crossed the line in the 66th minute – incidentally it was their FIRST try in any World Cup final even though they have won the trophy twice before – England’s chances were vanishing rapidly. Muscle and might were already in full control.

The dreary procession of scrum penalties, bashing and barging by the Springboks and the bewildering kicking tactics were more than enough to make this viewer wonder what all the fuss over the last eight weeks had been about. Is this what we had been looking forward to?

The World Cup has been a great occasion in front of packed houses, embraced by a nation eager to please, some wonderful games including the thrilling performances of Japan and England’s semi-final against the All Blacks.

The occasion deserved a better final than it got.

To avoid any accusation of bias I thought that the first hour of the League Test against New Zealand in Auckland was almost as one-dimensionally dreary as the Yokohama final.

Great Britain’s 12-8 defeat by the Kiwis was hardly a surprise but, unfortunately, neither was the lack of attacking flair.

Coach Wayne Bennett may have tightened up the defence but he has done little to encourage adventure in attack.

And his verdict that “the first half was a pretty dismal game of football, there was just nothing happening” was the understatement of the week.

It all added up to a bad day for English rugby –whatever your choice of code. But don’t think it’s all over.

Players in the Blame Game were lining up almost before the teams had left the field.

*Did you spot that armpit that was offside at Villa Park? VAR did. And so did the man with the flag who was running the line.

Seriously, who would have thought that an armpit could be offside? But it is official. The Premier League said so in a statement that read: “The red line signifies Firmino and was aligned to his armpit, which was marginally ahead of the last Villa defender.”

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp may have been stretching a point by suggesting that VAR could cost a manager his job, but he is spot on when he says it is no laughing matter.

“When we talk about serious moments, very important moments in football it’s not right to sit here and everyone wants to laugh about it,” he said.

There is a solution that couldn’t make life much simpler. Change the law to one that is easy to understand: if there is daylight between defender and attacker he is offside. An armpit in the wrong place is hardly a ploy to gain an unfair advantage. And surely that is the whole point of the offside law.

When even one of its great defenders Jamie Carragher is having doubts isn’t it time to admit that the system is failing?

*If by some fluke you missed the news from the US, Lewis Hamilton is the Formula 1 world champion for the sixth time, now just one short of the record held by Michael Schumacher.

That is good news even if, like me, you are baffled by the mass appeal of cars with the guidance systems of spacecraft zipping past at 200 miles an hour. Hamilton is clearly the world’s finest.

But there are plenty of other things some of us aren’t privileged to understand – like what is it about American football? How can two teams, one from Texas and the other from Florida, regularly pack Wembley Stadium with 80,000 spectators?

And equally mystifying are the laws covering rugby union scrums. Can anybody explain why one set of forward would deliberately collapse the scrum so that they can offer their opponents the match-deciding gift of three easy points? And if it isn’t deliberate, why is it a penalty? Or is there some other reason for having scrums at all?

One thing missing from a weekend of TV sport designed to suit almost everybody was the commentators on the World Series of Darts talking tactics. Now that would have taken some explaining.