Leeds legend suggests St Helens clash was spoilt by decisions

Jon Wilkin has slammed a decision that went against St Helens tonight as they were stunned by Leeds Rhinos 25-24 in their homecoming after winning the World Club Challenge.

At 24-all, Saints forced a drop out and Sam Walters hit Matty Lees with a thunderous challenge.

Jack Welsby then started a pushing match feeling that the tackle was illegal and replays suggested it could have been a shoulder charge.

That was the view of Jon Wilkin on Sky Sports after initially believing the tackle to be fair.

He said:

“You can’t do that. That is a shoulder charge. I apologise to Jack Welsby, that is a shoulder charge.

“That is a step too far, he will be lucky to still be on the field. At first I thought he had wrapped the arm but it was Cameron Smith who had done that.

“When Matty Lees is coming at you like that, you have to wrap your arm around.”

Everyone was preparing for Tommy Makinson to have a shot at goal till Chris Kendall ruled that it wasn’t a shoulder charge, giving Leeds a penalty for Welsby’s involvement in a crucial moment that helped turn the game.

Barrie McDermott then said: “I think he has got that wrong, for me it is a shoulder charge.”

Before Wilkin described it as a shocking decision: “That is a shocker. That’s not a shoulder charge? I called it from up here that it looked like a fair challenge so I get it, but having seen it a few times are you tell me it is not a shoulder charge?

“Saints will be fuming with that decision.”

Ironically, his opinions were seemingly seconded by a player he once scrapped with in a Saints-Leeds clash in the shape of Leeds Rhinos legend Keith Senior.

He suggested the game was spoilt by the decisions at the end:

“It’s a shame that game will be remembered for the last 2 minutes and the decisions at the end!”

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