IMRAN GASHKORI | Sports Editor | Contact
The predominantly Sydney-based National Rugby League has today announced that referees are being ordered to “turn a blind eye” when it comes to unnecessary rulings that might hinder any momentum as the competition heads towards an explosive Sydney grand final.
The game’s executive directors are asking referees to bend rules where they see fit and to make sure they allow as many exciting tries as possible. Even 7th tackle tries.
Director of marketing and excitement strategies, Sidney Sentrik, has justified this bold new decision.
“The whole idea is to make sure Sydney clubs are given the same opportunities as Queensland clubs,”
“Last year we got to a Grand Final without any of them. They still had to play in Sydney too… It was very distressing for our foundation clubmen,”
In 2014, Cowboys skipper Johnathan Thurston was denied a match-winning try with 54 seconds remaining. It cost North Queensland a victory in the semi-final at Allianz Stadium, beaten 31-30 by the Sydney Roosters.
The year before that, it was in the seventh minute of 2013 semi-finals when Cronulla’s Beau Ryan was awarded a converted try on the seventh tackle. In the context of the match, the six points was decisive.
“They are getting a bit too big for their boots up there,” says Sentrik,
“It is always very cute to see the Cowboys get this far up the ladder, but let’s be realistic… They are not a grand final team,”
“Let’s just see how this whole salary cap drama plays out first – they might have their points stripped yet”
Earlier in the season it was revealed via The Daily Telegraph, that a string of development Cowboys players were ‘breaking the law’ by egging cars.
As far as investigations go, it seems that no one has broken any rules and the conspiracies have been put down to nervous Sydney-based sports journalists attempting to fracture the Cowboys’ potential to gallop over pitiful Sydney outfits.
It is believed the Cowboys are confident ahead of next week’s showdown with the Cronulla Sharks, even after a statement issued by the match referee, Gerrard Sutton, revealed that he will be pushing for a free-flowing game of football.
“The tackle count will not be a priority on the night,” said Sutton.
“The Cowboys have the homeground advantage and I will be doing whatever possible to give Cronulla a fighting chance,”