Interestingly there has been plenty of talk after the Eels golden point win over the Knights writes John Chelsea – but were the officials really in the wrong? Were the Knights worse off for the decisions?
The first dubious call came as the Knights were winning 12-10 and about to get possession in good field position after Eel Taulima Tautai knocked on. After the knock-on was checked by the video referee, it was ruled Knights half Scott Dureau knocked the ball out. The Knights were probably slightly hard done by here, it was an unintentional knock by Dureau and was more a case of Taulima Tautai not securing his carry as he was rising to his feet.
This call turned out to be fairly crucial, the Eels scoring two tries after this to break away to a comfortable lead before half-time.
The Eels had their frustrations with officials when Mark Riddell was denied a certainÂ try, ruled held by Tony ArcherÂ before the tackle completed. Piggy spinning out of aÂ 3 man Knights tackle to score a try. This costly blunder by the referee certainly evened up the stakes; the Knights and Eels even in terms of critical calls.
The next complaint came soon after from the Knights, when captain and hooker Danny Buderus was stripped of the ball by Jarryd Hayne. Immediately ruled a knock-on by referee Archer, the Knights complained and wanted the strip checked by the video referee. It was hard to understand what the Newcastle side was complaining about here, either way the Eels would have got possession. Hayne stripping the ball back towards his line, then Hindmarsh gathering it before play even stopped – so the Knights weren’t hard done by in this situation as some may have said.
As the game got to the final 15 minutes, both sides got a bit scrappy and there was a period with plenty of dropped ball. From the lead-up to the Keith Lulia try where a possible forward pass was thrown, to several knock-on’s that were missed against the Knights; Newcastle should probably count themselves lucky these weren’t picked up and the critical calls certainly worked out even for both sides.
The ending to the game simply proved how close these two teams were. The lead chopping and changing as field goal snaps came into play.
The frustrating thing for the NRL and Officials – is that no matter what they do, they cannot win. Last season, there were complaints about ball security in the rucks. Acting on the outcry, the NRL innovate and introduce a new rule to ensure that ruck infringements where the ball is affected can be reviewed by the video referee and yet the public and TV commentators have done nothing but complain about the new rule and delays that occur.
Lets think positive and move with the times. Occasionally a rule introduced maybe wrong and might need tweaking, but lets give things a chance and stop complaining.
With such passion and consistently close results almostÂ weekly in the NRL – we are sure to see tempers flared and much more complaining yet I feel. We’d love to hear your thoughts on the game, please comment below and we will review and publish each and everyone.