Hasler criticised over referee attacks - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Hasler criticised over referee attacks

By Josh Jerga 08/04/2010 11:28:36 AM Comments (0)

Manly coach Des Hasler's recent heated criticisms of NRL referees have him skating on thin ice.

Two weeks after promising to pay for two touch judges to visit an eye specialist for a check-up, Hasler criticised the experience of an NRL referee.

Despite Manly's 14-6 win over the Warriors, Hasler was livid over the sin-binning of fullback Ben Farrar for a professional foul.

At the post-match press conference Hasler said: "It was an inexperienced call from an inexperienced referee.

"Nothing came of it for us. He might get a kick up the pants from (referees' boss) Robert Finch and he won't do it again."

However Finch said the comment was completely unwarranted as the referee in question, Chris James, had consulted the other referee Ben Cummins before making the decision and both agreed.

"Every referee has looked at that decision and every one of them would have sin-binned him," he said.

"If it happened again next week he would be sin-binned again."

Finch said it had now become common for Hasler to criticise referees.

NRL chief operating officer Graham Annesley said coaches are free to criticise referees when it is warranted but making personal comments or suggesting unfairness was going too far.

Annesley said in previous weeks Hasler had come very close to crossing the line with his comments and did risk costing his club a $10,000 fine.

"That's as close as you can go without getting yourself into trouble," he said.

"That was pretty much border line by him and we wouldn't want to see that sort of thing become regular comments."

Annesley said the NRL didn't want to gag coaches in front of the media but at the same time they had to protect officials from unwarranted attacks.

Hasler said he was not concerned by suggestions his constant criticisms of referees may be close to crossing the line.

"They're professionals and they're entitled to constructive criticisms," he said on Wednesday.

On Sunday Warriors coach Ivan Cleary goaded Hasler after his side's loss to Manly saying he may have to start "pulling doors off hinges" if he believed the referees were wrong about a controversial try awarded to Manly's Steve Matai.

It was a reference to Hasler's destructive outburst in a Parramatta changing room after the Eels' come-from-behind win over Manly.

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