31st March 2018, 09:19 | steve_mascord

WE GOT ISSUES: Controversial Good Friday

WE GOT ISSUES: Controversial Good Friday


Danny Houghton awarded a try after the ball is jolted from Mickey Paea’s grasp.

First couple of viewings and commentator Phil Clarke seemed to be right on the money – the ball seemed to be lost by Hull's Paea, albeit with the help of a defender. Still a fumble. But the slow-motion end-on revealed the ball being punched out by Adam Quinlan. Unintentional perhaps but Paea wasn’t responsible for the Steeden lolling into Hull KR’ in-goal and shouldn’t have been held responsible.

 Was it a loose carry? A tough one but Quinlan's action seemed decisive. There on the grass, it was claimed by the redoubtable Hull hooker Houghton. Verdict: right decision? Yes. 


Bureta Faraimo sent off after nine minutes in Hull derby.

This is part of the competition’s crackdown on attacking the head of ball carriers. One thing we perhaps all agree on – in years gone by it would not have been a red card and in the NRL, it would still not be a dismissal. Now let’s get down to tin tacks: was it the right decision?

The ball had been passed by Chris Atkin but there was something of a wrapping action with right arm of Hull’s United States international. It wasn’t a shoulder charge; Faraimo actually seemed to be asking the referee if he was talking to him when the card was flashed. And a tackle by George Williams on Regan Grace in the second TV game wasn't that different. But if the competition wants to crack down on head trauma that’s not a bad thing, is it?

Verdict: right decision? Probably.


Jake Connor taunts defence as he goes over for Hull FC try.

We often say we don’t have enough characters in the game. Hull’s Jake Connor, you are officially excused from this criticism. If you’re going to give your opposition motivation, which Connor did by beckoning KR defenders to come and get him as he crossed in the corner, you’ve got to back it up.

Too many people in rugby league are worried about ending up on the opposition dressingroom wall. And Connor backs it up. But… could he have got the ball closer to the posts had he focused on that instead if cheekiness? It appears so.

Verdict: right decision? No.


Sean O’Loughlin is penalised for stripping the ball from Morgan Knowles. The goal ties the Saints-Wigan derby.

It’s a good question: we spend so much time getting tries right, with umpteen replays, but penalties which impact on results get far less attention.

Sean O'Loughlin

We can neatly divide fans into those who want more video interference and those who want less. In this case, St Helens’ Knowles clearly lost the ball. Like the Faraimo decision, it could have affected the result but it didn’t.

Verdict: right decision? No.


Ben Barba blows up after being bundled into his own in-goal following a kick reception.

We’re not sure if the man of the match at the Totally Wicked Stadium was complaining to the referee he caught the ball in the field of play and there should have been no drop-out or to team-mates Tommy Makinson and Ryan Morgan that they didn’t provide him with enough protection from the onrushing defence.

Ben Barba

Centre Morgan certainly seemed to respond to what he perceived as criticism. Either way, it’s never a good look to see team-mates arguing and Barba probably wouldn’t do it if he had his chance again.

Verdict: right decision? No.


Wigan shoot for goal after Joel Tomkins scores with a minute left, leaving his team down by three points.

Growing up watching rugby league, you occasionally hear commentators in such situations urge players to eschew the conversion and use the scant remaining time to go for a try. But how often does this situation arise? One in every 200 or 300 games? Less often.

Throw in fatigue and the prevailing feeling that Saints had the game won and you can understand why the Warriors kind of went through the motions here. It’s hard to think strategically in that situation.

Verdict: right decision? No.