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Liam Moore ‘guessed’ crucial Wigan Warriors call claims James Graham

St Helens and England legend James Graham has questioned if referee Liam Moore was guessing when awarding Jake Wardle’s winning try for Wigan Warriors last night.

Wigan Warriors won their fifth World Club Challenge title as they beat Penrith Panthers, the NRL champions losing in the game for a second year in a row and a record fourth time.

As for Wigan, victory meant that they tied the record for the most ever wins in the game at five along with South Sydney but it wasn’t a win without controversy.

Super League has been packed with controversy so far specifically regarding the number of cards shown as laws are tightened up surrounding head contact.

As such the World Club Challenge clash between Wigan Warriors and Penrith Panthers was agreed to be refereed under international rules, however, that hasn’t meant that notions of controversy were avoided.

The key moments of contention surround Jake Wardle’s match-winning try early in the second-half and whether he was able to ground the ball, whilst there were a handful of other dubious calls.

Reaction down under has already seen Phil Gould label Wardle a “fibber” but the opinion of an Englishman abroad in James Graham has been heard, and he isn’t too sure either.

“He’s made an assumption” – Graham argues that Wigan Warriors got away with one

Wigan Warriors Penrith Panthers

Graham was working on Fox Sports when covering the game and the post-match reaction, led by host Braith Anasta, focused on the Wardle try and the controversial Taylan May no try in the last seconds.

Former New South Wales rep Anasta was the first to question Liam Moore’s decision to award the Wardle try on field, a decision that video referee Chris Kendall couldn’t find enough evidence to overturn.

Anasta said: “I do now know how he could award that a try or go up with a try. He wasn’t in a good position, he couldn’t see the ball go down onto the ground.”

It is worth noting that the NRL system has a more authoritative video referee that can turn over on-field decisions, whereas in England the benefit goes to the on-field officials’ decision.

In response to Anasta’s claim that Liam Moore couldn’t see the ball at all, Graham responded simply: “He couldn’t.”

Continuing, he said: “He’s made an assumption and I guess that’s in the wording. He’s sent it up as a try versus the dying moment where he sends it up as no try.

“You could make a strong case that those two decisions are on the opposite ends of the spectrum.”

The other decision that Graham was referring to was the call to not award Taylan May’s last-gasp try, Liam Moore being unsighted on the incident which does beg the question of why he felt he could see the Wardle try instead.

Graham added: “You could probably send both up as ‘I’ve got no try, so can you look at them’. I think the Jake Wardle one in particular. I tend to agree (that this is more contentious than the Taylan May no-try).

“I just don’t know if that ball gets to the line.”

3 Comments

3 Comments

  1. Mike Pevitt

    February 26, 2024 at 7:06 am

    How did the VR not see Wardles double movement as well, both tries should have gone up as no try.

    • R allender

      February 26, 2024 at 3:04 pm

      Two refs who both should retire .giving tries and no tries when they have no idea ..the last try on tine should have been benefit of the doubt .not no try as it was. Crap reffing as the ball steal was perfect and should have carried on .seems cheating in reffing is the norm now hope you accept my opinion

      • Anonymous

        February 27, 2024 at 12:02 am

        I think every British rugby league supporter wanted Wigan to win, but on merit, it will be back to the 70s and 80s when biased refereeing won the game for the home nation.will be interesting to see the next time an English club goes to oz

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