5 Friday Footy Follies, and a Headbutt to the Foot

Why does refereeing never seem to improve? Maybe it’s like golf, where it seems almost impossible to learn and you repeat the same errors like a madman for 4hrs. Until the 18th hole, that is, when it all becomes crystal clear.

There’s no other way to put it. Refereeing in the NRL has become a modern day tragedy. Common sense is rarely, if ever, applied, and it won’t be long until we hear the chorus of ‘we don’t want these decisions to determine a Grand Final’. If Daniel Anderson is doing anything other than sobbing into his hands at last night’s performance, then he is part of the problem. I suspect he understands what is required, and will await his urgent response to what, quite frankly, was a performance to forget.

Obstruction

Obstruction – as the Dr has opined previously, this cannot be a ‘rules-based’ area. If that’s the way the NRL wants to go, as they have, then you get incidents where even minor contact two postcodes away from the ball registers as ‘obstruction’. It is the letter of the law, but no-one is impeded. Work that out.

Cooper Cronk actually ran at pace away from such an incidental contact last night, which occurred nearly 20 metres away in the first place. More to the point, no Bulldog thought it was an obstruction, the defender wasn’t even moving toward the ball, and therefore, there was zero reason to deny a try.

How would Daniel Anderson have reacted if it cost his 2009 Parramatta side the Grand Final?

Remember, chaps, proactive is not a vitamin.

Advantage … err, what’s that?

While rugby union referees are famous for nit-picking, they know how to apply the advantage rule. The referees need to explain why they don’t employ a common sense judgement on this. They can start by explaining why the Bulldogs were penalised over 10 metres after a Storm knock on, rather than set a scrum where it actually occurred. Te Bulldogs only made it back to the knock on area after 3 tackles. It remains one of life’s enduring mysteries.

Slater’s Skates

What the referee saw - Source: slcmma

What the referee saw – Source: slcmma

The Dr was always taught to lift the knee when jumping high for a bomb. It’s simple self defence. Or, you can just leave yourself defenceless and wait for a missile to line up your solar plexus and drive you into tomorrow. Simple and obvious, right?Now, if you were one of the 2.5 people who read the last blog, you will appreciate the Dr is no apologist for Billy Slater, and expressed the view that he shouldn’t have been playing anyway after last week’s hit on Antonio Winterstein.

What actually happened - Source: Daily Telegraph

What actually happened – Source: Daily Telegraph

But last night was not even close to a penalty to the Bulldogs. In the real world, he was defending himself passively by raising the legs (who runs into knees and legs?) while he was in the act of taking a high ball (which requires his eyes be actually focused on the ball).And since players cannot be taken out in the air anyway, no contact should have been made.

Time on / time off

Time on, wax off ... Wax on, time off ...

Time on, wax off … Wax on, time off …

We have been repeatedly subjected to the absurdity of seeing time stopped for a video ref to decide on a try in the first 2 rounds, only to see it restarted so that we can enjoy the pleasure of the dead time associated with … setting up a goal kick, lining it up, kicking it, and then returning the ball for the kick off.We then have last night’s game simply count down the last 30 seconds of the match (or 3-4 tackles worth of time) after a Storm player knocks a ball in goal. Tremendous stuff.

Time off, you plonkers. Is it so hard to make a sensible decision?

Crowd – 11,923

The Storm are the reigning NRL and WCC champions. Yet their home crowd of 11,923 is below last year’s average of an already low 14,000. If you ever wanted to know why we don’t have the extravaganzas of NFL Super Bowls, then there it is right there. You don’t invest the sums of money required by these activities if you don’t have the demand for it. And we don’t, so … we don’t.

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