My love of the game is strained right now.
It’s no secret that NRL is my game. I love it, live it, breathe it, need it, etc. Corey Parker is my player. The Brisbane Broncos are my team. The Queensland Maroons are my team. The New Zealand Kiwis are my team (even though I find it rather difficult to cheer against Parker).
So it must be a big deal if I’m getting ticked off with the quality of league that’s been produced recently. The players have been great and the action has been get-off-your-arse intense. So what’s been ruining the game this year? The refereeing. The officiating of the game has created a sour atmosphere in NRL all season and it doesn’t look like it’s getting better after watching some of the rep games this week.
Whenever rep footy is on, I’m always excited to see what’s going on. The action is always hard-hitting and the intensity of the game is at a high – not to mention the changing dynamic of players swapping teammates for rep teams is always an exciting thing to watch. As if it’s following a 2014 conduct, however, the refereeing of these games have been… adequate, to say the least.
Throughout the year, controversies including the Alex McKinnon tackle where officiating from not only the referees but the higher powers themselves wrecked the love of the game, to the Dragons-Storm controversy that does not need any more explaining. Let’s not forget the shocker at the end of last year that cost the North Queensland Cowboys finals footy.
If I may put my two cents into, here are some things that the referees need to improve on if the game is meant to return to its elite state:
Video refereeing, a luxury to be used only when needed
Is it me or do the referees go up to the video refs for, like, no reason? I’ve seen way too many tries scored that are as clear as day successful, yet the referee must’ve sneezed or something because he feels it necessary to go up to the video referee. I’m sorry but if I was one of these video referees who has to go through the trouble of looking through a blatantly obvious try or no try, I’d be pissed off. Almost as pissed off as the fans in the stands and at home who have to endure it.
Rules are there to be enforced
If it was illegal to wear green shoes on a Wednesday, and everyone knew it was illegal to wear green shoes on a Wednesday, why would you therefore allow someone to wear green shoes on a Wednesday when you’re in a position of power? The other day, I noticed a team captain (won’t mention names) swear at a referee in the heat of a debate. Back in the day, that would’ve been like ten in the bin straight away. This team captain got away with it and the game continued like normal. Two words: Umm. What.
The grass is green, you should be able to see that
This has nothing to do with grass, but I feel as if the referees vision are just as bad as the put-on-lack-of-vision of the referees in WWE. I don’t know what an easy solution for this problem is other than to increase your peripheral vision or something. Seriously, refs, something has got to be done about this. Calls like the North Queensland 2013 tragedy should never, ever, ever happen again.
Please, NRL, you are arguably the most loved game in sports in all of Australia. Please don’t ruin that because the officiating is as shotty as a bazooka.
NRL referees. I have four words.
Should’ve Gone to Specsavers.
– by Noah La’ulu