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Official View: Referee got it wrong on Broncos try

Stuart Raper & Bill Harrigan NRL.com Mon, Jun 20, 2011 - 2:30 PM

Dragons fullback Darius Boyd questions a forward pass decision. Copyright: NRL Photos

NRL referees co-coaches Stuart Raper and Bill Harrigan answer your questions from Round 15.

What did you make of the pass from Jack Reed to Jharal Yow Yeh that led to a try for the Broncos?

This was a wrong call, the pass definitely went forward from Reed to Yow Yeh. The mistake was made by the referee, not the touch judge. The referee believed that the ball has originally gone backwards before bouncing forwards. Like players, referees are human and make mistakes, they got this one wrong.

Earlier in the game Ratu Peni Tagive was called back for a forward pass, what did you make of the call?

It was a tight decision, but we are comfortable with the forward pass call. The pass travels forward a metre over the field and there was no momentum in pass. The officials were in the right position to make a call, and we're happy with their decision.

Are there protocols or guidelines around awarding a benefit of the doubt try?

If the referee does not have the evidence to take a try off a team, and the evidence is not conclusive to give a try, he will then apply the Benefit of the Doubt rule.

Will the sideline official from the Brisbane v St George Illawarra match be dropped?  

We have been asked numerous times if referees or touch judges should be dropped for making a bad call. We have dropped officials this year for mistakes, but like players, they make errors and we take a lot into consideration on whether to keep or drop a referee before making the decision. If the call is game-defining and the official has clearly been wrong there is a chance we could drop someone but even then we usually look at the overall performance of the team and of the individual before we make such a big decision. If their performance overall is good, we will normally keep the official.

Who will officiate the decider of State of Origin?  Were you happy with the performance in game II?

We have not made a decision on who will officiate Game 3 but we have been happy with the officials in both matches so far. It’s going to be a tough decision as not only those four are in consideration - we have others that continually put their hand up with the way they perform. We will make this decision next week.

What is the rule around the corner post? If the ball hits it and stays in, is this now deemed play-on? What happens if the ball touches the post while the player is in possession?

If the ball hits the corner post it is deemed dead-in-goal because it has to be assumed that the corner post has effectively stopped the ball from going out.

If the player hits the corner post while in mid air and no part of the player touches the line, it is play-on.

If the ball touches the corner post whilst in possession of the player, it is ruled not-out. To simplify - whilst the ball is in possession, the corner post is irrelevant.