When Brian Smith is angry, he will let you know about it – and that is exactly what he did at the post-match press conference, after the Roosters 30-26 loss to the Warriors in Auckland.
Describing the use of time-wasting at crucial times in matches as “ugly”, Smith spoke vehemently about it, after his side’s comeback fell just short.
It was a try to Anthony Minichello that made things tense, but what upset Smith, was that Minichello was unable to play the ball, after he was heavily dazed – as well as the time taken to pack a scrum, which eventually saw the Roosters penalised.
Smith was clearly disappointed, saying that there were, “too many disappointing calls to mention”.
“In the end, they did not even know that you should blow the whistle when the hooter goes,” he said of referees Steve Lyons and Henry Perenara.
Smith pointed in particular to the scrum, in which time was lost packing the scrum, when normally, time is blown off to do so.
We would probably do the same thing, by the way. The encouragement is there with the way the refs are interpreting all that, instead of taking a strong stand about that and working it out.
“It was just ugly for the game. I’m not talking about us losing because of that. It’s not the way we want.
“The rugby union World Cup final finishes with it seems like half an hour of guys just diving at the ground and chewing up the clock.
“It was an obscene sort of way for the climax of a tournament to finish, an extravaganza like that was, and our game has got that a little bit in it as well at the moment. I wish we could fix that.”
Warriors coach Brian McClennan also saw some moments that had him baffled, but refused to comment on the matter of the referees, until he saw the footage.
The only sour note for the Warriors, was utility back Jerome Ropati suffering a dislocated knee – an injury expected to see him sidelined for four to six weeks.