Sadly, the video referee has simply turned into a lottery affair. The Panthers extremely hard done by early on as the video referee ruled ‘benefit of the doubt’ to Benji Marshall after he clearly passed off the ground. It was obvious the video referees were told to use the benefit call after the State of Origin howler, but they have again got this wrong. It seems nerves compounds these guys in the box and common sense goes out the window.
But it didn’t stop there, while the Panthers were hard done by early – they got an amazing lottery call late in the game from the video, where they knocked on and ran from an offside position from a bomb to score a try. The video referee spun up the green light to laughter and amazement from everyone involved.
Everytime a try is referred to the video referee now, both the commentators and spectators alike simply cross their fingers and hope the official sees it as the world sees it. Rugby League now has the ‘roulette’ effect with the video referee, except its not red or black – it’s red or green your betting on and you have a 50/50 chance as the ruling could come up with anything.
The Tigers were hot in patches, looking dangerous early, but dropped ball and poor killed them – eventually consigning them to their 5th consecutive loss and now certain to miss the Top 8 finals series for the 4th year in a row.
The end result looked much better for Penrith with their 3 touchdowns coming in the last 10 mins of play to blow open drawn scoreline of 10 points a piece, halfback Luke Walsh struggled early with his kicking, but came home strong to two tries in the back end to get Penrith back in the mix with the top sides.
Fortunately all the errors from the video referee tonight didn’t effect the result, but it has gotten so bad that it’s gone beyond help. The video officials have lost the confidence of everyone involved in the game.