Simpkins to referee NRL Origin decider - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Simpkins to referee NRL Origin decider

28/06/2005 09:14:44 PM Comments (0)

Rugby league referee Paul Simpkins appears to have had the last laugh on NSW coach Ricky Stuart after being appointed for the Origin series decider in Brisbane on July 6.

Stuart has had two major run-ins with Simpkins this season, the last following NSW's 24-20 Origin I loss to Queensland on May 25.

Stuart was publicly warned by the NRL after he labelled Simpkins' decision to send off his Sydney Roosters forward Adrian Morley 10 weeks ago as "amateurish".

The Blues and Roosters mentor then copped a $10,000 fine for criticising referees in his Sydney newspaper column following the Blues' Origin I loss.

Both states have to support NRL referees boss Robert Finch's nomination as whistleblower and NSW did not back Simpkins after game one, opening the door for Steve Clark to officiate Origin II on June 15.

However, it was understood Queensland was alarmed at Clark's huge 10 metres in game two - giving Simpkins a chance to officiate his third Origin.

But Simpkins said both coaches should expect more of the same huge 10m at Origin III.

"If we can keep the teams apart and let them move the ball around, let them decide the game," he said.

"I think distance is always fairly big in Origin football and I can't see it being any different in the third."

Simpkins said he had "no issue" with Stuart.

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