Refs conned by Mal's media talk: Bellamy - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Refs conned by Mal's media talk: Bellamy

By Todd Balym 16/06/2009 07:49:05 PM Comments (0)

NSW coach Craig Bellamy could find himself in hot water after claiming State of Origin I referees were influenced by pre-match talk from Queensland coach Mal Meninga.

Bellamy remains infuriated at the performance of the officials in his side's 28-18 loss at Etihad Stadium, in particular the penalty against Jarryd Hayne for blocking Israel Folau from a cross-field kick.

The Maroons scored off the back of that penalty, their second try of three in a 10 minute period that effectively sealed the victory.

Meninga had spoken about the Blues targeting Folau on the eve of the game, and Bellamy is convinced those words resonated with the officials.

"Certainly, yeah," said Bellamy when asked if the referees were conned by Meninga.

"Certainly someone was reading the papers and it might have been that touch judge, with all due respect.

"And again Israel, if anyone watches him pretty closely at the moment, he's obviously wonderful under that high ball but if anyone gets in his road competing for the ball and he gets a little bump, he hits the ground straight away.

"So I'm thinking that linesman got pretty much conned in Melbourne."

Bellamy's comments are sure to come under scrutiny, but the NSW coach will be somewhat pleased that touch judges Jeff Younis and Steve Chiddy were on Tuesday dumped for Origin II at ANZ Stadium.

Tony Archer and Shayne Hayne were again appointed referees, but Russell Turner and Paul Holland are the new touch judges.

Video referees Bill Harrigan and Tim Mander retained their jobs after making a controversial no-try ruling on Hayne in the early stages of the game in Melbourne.

Bellamy said he would talk to referees coach Robert Finch about the other officiating problems he had with Origin I.

"There was a couple of things but I'll talk to Robert Finch about those," he said.

"I haven't actually got the referees report yet, I was supposed to get that last week but I didn't get it, so we'll get that and have a look at it and then talk to him about a couple of things specifically, but again I'm sure Queensland could say the same thing.

"There was a couple of things with a bit of flopping from the Queenslanders."

Meninga wouldn't be drawn on Bellamy's claim on Tuesday.

"Fair dinkum. What did I say? He's trying to con you guys. Leave me out of that sort of argument," he said in Brisbane.

"I have always been a believer that the referees are better to be left to adjudicate the game and not be talked about.

"My only comment about the referees is that they be consistent."

On the penalty against Folau in game one, Meninga said: "I am okay with anything that is in the rules.

"We got one penalty in the first half when they blocked Izzy illegally - and we deserved that penalty.

"I think that was the only time anything of that nature happened in the game really."

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