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Catalans Dragons star Sam Tomkins reacts strongly to increasing Super League punishments

The issue of gamesmanship seems to be popping up in rugby league more often than ever before.

The crackdown on foul play rules means that referees are brandishing more cards and the Disciplinary Match Review Panel is punishing more than ever.

For current Catalans Dragons star Sam Tomkins, the willingness to show yellow and red cards is ‘madness’.

Castleford Tigers’ fixture with Huddersfield Giants, for example, was full of excitement as a topsy-turvy game had just about everything.

It also had four cards being dished out by referee James Child for various instances of foul play.

One of those instances included Huddersfield’s Danny Levi being penalised and given a yellow card for what was deemed a late tackle on Joe Westerman by referee Child.

Giants boss Ian Watson spoke after the game how he was keen to stamp out some of the ‘gamesmanship’ that he fears is creeping into the game on the back of the crackdown in foul play.

“The sinbinnings were the ones that really hurt us and I’m not too sure on them – there’s a little bit of gamesmanship creeping in and the wrong type,” Watson said.

“The game is hard enough to referee without players feigning injuries.”

Westerman, who took what he described as a ‘stinger’ by Levi, has since responded to the yellow card being shown to the Huddersfield hooker.

The Castleford loose-forward tweeted: “Just want to say I’m not in favour of players getting sent off and the tackle on me I don’t think is a send off!! He got me good and give me a stinger which is part of the sport!!!”

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