There are no words to describe the way I would be feeling after this week’s finals games if I was a North Queensland Cowboy supporter. With all the new technology and devices that we have at our finger tips, it is beyond me that both referees and video referees are still getting big decisions wrong.
As a strong supporter of the game, I honestly felt ill watching the last half of Friday night’s game between the Cowboys and defending champions the Sea Eagles. At 12-12 the game was far from over yet two controversial decisions made by the referees knocked the Cowboys out of the 2012 season.
How beneficial, is the ‘benefit of the doubt’ call to the game when, if wrong, can force a team prematurely out of the competition. There is more evidence that Kiran Foran did hit the ball than half doubting it and assuming he didn’t. I sometimes wonder if the referees are seeing what we are! Decisions like this made anytime of the year, let alone in an elimination game, are uncalled for and inexcusable. Apologising the next day does not give the losing team a chance the next week.
The rules of the game and the video referees input needs to be re-looked at and significant changes must be made in order to keep the nature of the game and keep the history of it respected and untarnished.
Many felt as though the game appeared to be rigged due to these extreme decisions. Social media platforms were sent into a frenzy with memes being created and shared on Facebook, mocking the referees and decisions of the game.
I feel for Johnathan Thurston and the whole team as it is a shocking and unacceptable way to exit the competition. However, this isn’t the first time decisions like this have been incorrectly made. The ARLC and the referees body need to have a good look at the role of the referees and what needs to be done to stop such errors in the future.
The weekend’s games saw the exit of the Cowboys and Raiders meaning that the semi finals this week will be the top four battling it out for a spot in the grand final. Melbourne Storm will play the Sea Eagles on Friday night in Melbourne, while the Rabbitohs look to secure their spot in their first grand final in 41 years against the minor premiers the Bulldogs.
How to lose friends and alienate people - ARL Independent Commission style
Hope sprung eternal when the ARL Independent Commission was finally created, but what exactly have they done? How have they gone about achieving their eight primary objects which are:
be the single controlling body and administrator of the Game
foster, develop, extend and provide adequate funding for the Game from the junior to elite levels and generally to act in the best interests of the Game
liaise with and delegate appropriate functions to governing bodies of the Game in the States and Territories of Australia, including the NSWRL and QRL
organise and conduct all State of Origin and Australian Representative Games
organise, conduct and foster the NRL Competition
liaise with the Rugby League International Federation Limited and organisations controlling the game in other countries in the fostering and control of the game of Rugby League throughout the world
promote and encourage either directly or indirectly the physical, cultural and intellectual welfare of young people in the community and, in particular, the Rugby League community
promote and encourage either directly or indirectly sport and recreation, particularly Rugby League football, in the interests of the social welfare of young persons
Now I don’t expect you to read those, but basically, those are what the ARLC use to govern themselves to govern the game.
1. Be the single controlling body and administrator of the game They’ve achieved this. They are the sole governing body of the NRL, State of Origin and Australian Test Matches
2.Foster, develop, extend and provide adequate funding for the game from the junior to elite levels and generally to act in the best interests of the game
Well, I must say, from what I’ve heard, in some parts junior RL, funding increased this year, and other junior clubs will receive extra funding next year which is great to hear. At elite level, well the new TV deal should see money go into things like the Salary Cap, Leagues Clubs, and helping clubs create better youth development systems. As for generally acting in the best interests of the game……well they went and hypocritically denied Danny Burderus the chance to prepare himself for life after footy, they still haven’t announced a 2013 draw, even though the Engligh Super League which finished AFTER the NRL has, and they also just banned one of the most exciting aspects of the game which happens so rarely, the shoulder charge. I’ll leave it up to you to decide if they’ve acted in the best interests of the game. 3. Liaise with and delegate appropriate functions to governing bodies of the Game in the States and Territories of Australia, including the NSWRL and QRL Again from what I’ve heard, liaison with state governing bodies is improving. As for delegation, well not much has changed there, because the states basically ran their own states already
4. Organise and conduct all State of Origin and Australian Representative Games
Well, they went and did that. Yesterday it was announced that the State of Origin draw for 2013-2017 was announced. NSW will host two games in 2013 and 2016, QLD will host two games in 2014 and 2017, and both NSW and QLD will host one game in 2015 with a game to go to VIC. Some don’t agree with this, some do, and some just don’t give two hoots and want the season back. The ARLC also made a decision on next years ANZAC Test, and wisely decided to announce that Australia’s Capital, Canberra, would host it to coincide with the city’s 100 year birthday celebrations (now if only they had a fit stadium to host the game in).
5. Organise, conduct and foster the NRL Competition
To date, the 2013 NRL Season is a *. This is because as we sit at the end of November, there is no 2013 Draw. We were promised a draw by the end of last week, but instead Channel 9 chucked a tanty at the 11th hour and were not happy with their Sunday allocations, so instead we continue to wait. This makes it difficult for fans and clubs to make plans for 2013. How is a club like Brisbane meant to offer a NSW membership package with tickets to 3 NSW games, when they don’t even know when they will play in NSW? How does NZ plan for having to go overseas? The ARLC has really dropped the ball here. And as for the banning of the shoulder charge, well last night I saw a stat which said of all the hundreds of thousands of tackles, 71 were deemed to be shoulder charges, yeah, real big issue in the game.
I’ll stop here because the other three are quite technical, but the point here is. The ARLC, which everyone was so badly wanting to succeed, is succeeding, in doing the wrong things.