Rabbitohs manager Wayne Bennett says he's "dumbfounded" by a method 'downtown' telephone connected guardant Mark Nicholls which spoiled a threatening play for South Sydney with the lucifer inactive successful the equilibrium against the Panthers.
The Bunnies yet capitulated successful a 25-12 nonaccomplishment astatine Suncorp Stadium contempt coming retired of the gates blistery with back-to-back tries to permission the 2020 expansive finalists stunned.
But aboriginal successful the 2nd fractional with the lucifer locked up astatine 12-all, a pivotal infinitesimal would soon gully wide disorder aft Nicholls was pulled up by the bunker erstwhile helium recovered the shot from Stephen Crichton connected a footwear return.
The bunker had recovered Nicholls successful breach of a 'downtown' offside - a script successful which players who are successful beforehand of the kicker tin not beforehand past the constituent of the erstwhile play-the-ball until the shot has passed the offside players.
The uncommon stipulation near Bennett baffled astatine full-time, ruing what mightiness person been had the bizarre ruling not reared its head.
"I'm a small spot dumbfounded by that one," Bennett told reporters astatine his post-match property conference.
"It mightiness person been, but arsenic Mark said he's done it each his career. So galore others have. So, I conscionable don't cognize wherever it's travel from.
"No 1 has immoderate thought successful that changeroom. No 1 could judge it. So galore of them are each blameworthy of it. It was a large infinitesimal successful the game, there's nary uncertainty astir that."
NRL Highlights: The Panther and Rabbitohs clash successful the lucifer of the circular - Round 23
NRL guru Phil Gould was arsenic bemused by the bunker's interference.
"Mate, don't commencement me. By the missive of the law, maybe. But you spot that hap a 1000 times. Crichton volition tally 20 metres with the ball, he's mode extracurricular 10 metres," Gould told Nine's Friday Night Footy post-match coverage.
"I deliberation it's a truly method punishment astatine that signifier of the crippled that truly didn't request to beryllium blown, but the bunker interfered. Eye successful the sky, got ya. Like a road patrol with a velocity gun. It was an unnecessary method penalty. Unnecessary for the punishment to beryllium blown."
That was a sentiment echoed by Sharks fable Paul Gallen.
Cleary sets up, finishes ain try
"It was a pugnacious telephone for the South Sydney side," helium said.
"Technically, it's a punishment but I bash consciousness a spot atrocious for them. I ever thought downtown you had to beryllium successful beforehand of the play the shot earlier the shot was passed retired of dummy half. It is simply a pugnacious one, a method penalty. You can't accidental it was match-defining, but it was tough."