Paul Green has all but deferred to the common vernacular of North Queenslanders at this time of year in his appraisal of the Grade 3 shoulder charge ruling handed down to firebrand Tariq Sims.
It was Sims’ third suspension in 2014 alone, which will sideline him for a combined eight weeks after earlier misdemeanours involving Raider Shaun Fensom (Dangerous Throw, two weeks) and Wests Tigers back Tim Simona (Crusher, one week).
In preparation for their do-or-die semi final against Sydney this Friday the Cowboys’ legal team first had considerations to make, and while Green said they had a strong case for a reduction, the risk of fighting had outweighed the reward.
“It would have been a huge distraction for us and given our record with the judiciary (it was best not to challenge). We took Tariq in last time for a crusher tackle which I thought was 'nothing in it' and he got found guilty so I’ve got no faith in the consistency of the judiciary, so we felt it’s better to just move on,” Green said Tuesday.
“I was pretty keen (to fight the ruling). I thought we had certainly sufficient evidence to argue given what the NRL showed us at the start of the season about what constitutes a shoulder charge. I felt we had a good argument. Their key points for the shoulder charge are separation (between the leading arm and the body), wrapping the arms around, arm tucked in; we felt that there was sufficient evidence to argue all of those points.
When asked his view on the acquittal of Roosters prop Jared Waerea-Hargreaves after a high contact charge, Green said: “It’s cost Tariq, it doesn’t seem to cost anyone else in the competition.
“That’s the thing, it’s ended not just (Tariq’s) season but his career here at the club and unfortunately that’s something Tariq has to deal with. He’s pretty shattered by it.”
The rookie coach is not afraid to voice his opinion after criticising the judiciary in May following the downgrading of Josh Reynolds’ dangerous throw on recent retiree Brent Tate in State of Origin 1 – incidentally around the same time of Sims’ first charge.
Green still has men who are keen to prove themselves in the form of off-contract veteran Glenn Hall, who will start, and 11-gamer Ethan Lowe coming on to the bench.
“Hally’s won comps before, he’s been around for a long time so he knows what it’s all about so he’ll be fine,” Green said.
“(Lowe) has played well in the couple of games he’s been back there and he’s also done a good job for us at different times throughout the year, so it’s a great opportunity for Ethan. He’s a young guy so hopefully some energy, some enthusiasm and some intensity.”
Kyle Feldt is also likely to play Friday despite twisting his ankle in a tackle in Saturday’s Elimination Final.