Queensland hits back at Gould - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Queensland hits back at Gould

By Brent Read and Wayne Heming 15/06/2004 07:38:07 PM Comments (0)

The Queensland Rugby League accused Phil Gould of grandstanding and stupidity after the NSW coach claimed the Maroons had pressured referee Sean Hampstead ahead of the second State of Origin game.

QRL managing director Ross Livermore was offended by Gould's insinuation Queensland had used its leverage to ensure Wednesday night's Origin II was a more open affair to suit the return of Maroons five-eighth Darren Lockyer.

"He's gone right over the top. To suggest Queensland manipulates the referee is just rubbish and a very stupid thing to say," Livermore said.

"Gus is on the way out. He makes a habit of grandstanding at the last media conference.

"He did it in Sydney and he's done it again.

"We don't take any notice of that. It becomes boring."

The Blues wrapped up their preparations at Suncorp Stadium, with centre Matthew Gidley cleared to play after passing a fitness test on his thigh injury.

But confirmation Gidley would take his place was overshadowed by Gould's outburst.

The premiership-winning coach, who will stand down at the end of this year's series to make way for Sydney Roosters coach Ricky Stuart, again used his final press conference to launch an extraordinary attack on Queensland.

"I think the QRL decide what the referee is going to do," Gould said.

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