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Ex-Official not happy about “delay tactic” in Super League as he picks out one game in particular

Richard Silverwood

Fans and pundits have been divided over what some say was a clutch play and others have called the dark arts.

As the game between Hull FC and Wigan Warriors went down to the Wire, Sky Sports commentator Stuart Pyke said “one more catch from Davy Litten to win the game” which was a fair assessment.

However, despite a brilliant and brave display by the young man who has impressed many lately, he fumbled the ball and it was scooped up by Joe Shorrocks.

Wigan had a minute to score and had open space to attack but, making his Hull FC debut, halfback Jake Trueman clung on to Shorrocks for too long giving away a penalty for a professional foul and being sin binned.

However, in many ways this action won the game for Hull as they held on 14-10 with Wigan making an error in their attacking set now that the Hull defence had had a chance to reset.

Now former Super League referees have had their say including Ian Smith.

He said on social media:

“He jumps off quickly, Wigan get a quick play the ball and probably score, of course he is going to hold on and risk a penalty, which in that situation has to be a sin bin for a cynical professional foul.

“It was only a 50 second sin bin so definitely worth the risk.”

Meanwhile, Richard Silverwood echoed Tony Smith’s thoughts that the tackle was no different from others this season.

Silverwood that there is a delay tactic in Super League that was prominent between Huddersfield Giants and St Helens.

He described it as “shocking” as he emphasised that the right decision was reached.

He said: “100% a delay tactic. Seen it a lot this year. Huddersfield v Saints stood out. It was shocking and allowed to happen. Agree with sin bin however had the ball been played I still think Hull weren’t set and Wigan score so stopping the game also effected Wigan.”

After the game Silverwood named, Phil Clarke claimed St Helens were “effectively cheating.”

He said:

“Maybe when they’re prepared to defend on their own try line, maybe one of the reasons why Huddersfield and other teams can’t score against St Helens is that they’d rather slow down the opposition and concede six more tackles in the belief that, ‘we’ll defend, as long as it’s not quick, we can defend our try line for two minutes’.

“Maybe that’s something that the game’s administrators needs to look at.

“They played a game last year against Salford at the end where they effectively cheated at the end to win the match in the league match.

“I do think that the game needs to be stricter at penalising sides that are purposefully holding down players or concede penalties or six agains near to their own try line.

“We need to see more yellow cards for that type of behaviour.”

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