I hate the term ‘robbed’, but it seems to be the only word that fits the situation the Canberra Raiders find themselves in after Friday night’s loss to the Cronulla Sharks.
I don’t think it is necessary to describe the debacle that was the refereeing display at Shark Park as the officials swayed the match when the Raiders were attempting to get out of jail and keep their finals chances alive.
Ricky Stuart’s comments to Tim Gavel on ABC Grandstand in the wake of the match reveal the disbelief and pain that is felt in the Raiders camp this weekend.
Stuart referred to the referee’s decisions as “monumental mistakes” and has asked the NRL to explain to him how and why this occurred.
Stuart, who has coached the Roosters, Eels and Sharks in the past, said that he believes his side is treated differently than any other club in the competition.
“This club gets treated differently to other clubs that I’ve been involved in and I know other clubs have got a higher profile and who [the NRL] need in their competition,” he said.
“I believe we get treated differently at times. That’s the way it feels to me.”
The coach said he feels like his side’s legs were cut off underneath them by the referees and bunkers’ decisions.
“I am just so disappointed for my players,” Stuart said. “They are not deciding results in games today.
“More and more and more the referees are deciding games now due to their interpretations, rulings and incorrect decisions.
“Isn’t it sad that we are talking about refereeing decisions after a game of football that had so much at stake?”
It is isn’t it. Instead of talking about the Raiders survival in the competition, or how their finals chances are holding on by the thinnest of threads, we are here criticising the men who are meant to remain out of the spotlight.
Do you think the Canberra Raiders are treated differently by the NRL than any other club? Let us know in the comments section below.