There has been more than one feisty World Cup clash this week.
On Saturday, England met France in front of 23,000 fans in Bolton and the game threatened to boil over more than once throughout the contest such as when Jack Welsby and Morgan Escare nearly sparked a brawl which saw the pair cited by the match review panel for nearly sparking a “melee” but avoided bans due to the fact no punches were thrown.
In a similar incident, Tom Burgess was shown a yellow card and placed on report right at the end of the game but avoided a ban.
Leeds Rhinos’ Mikolaj Oledzki likewise was placed on report for a potential cannon ball tackle but due to the fact that it wasn’t intentional, he avoided a ban whilst Victor Radley and Luke Thompson escaped bans for late hits.
That’s a total of six players cited by the panel for one game but the clash between Ireland and Lebanon exceeded this with nine.
Kayane Kalache was the first player to be cited for a “testicle squeeze” on Leeds Rhinos’ James Bentley but didn’t receive a ban due to “inconclusive footage.”
Liam Byrne was cited three times himself. The Wigan Warriors man was banned for two of these – both dangerous contact charges – and received a caution for other contrary behaviour.
Teammate Leigh Leopards bound Rob Mulhern meanwhile was cited for causing a melee at the end of the first half which he was sin binned for.
Jalal Bazzaz of Lebanon likewise was also cited after picking up a yellow card. That was his second after he was cited as well for dangerous contact.
Lastly, two more Irish players were cited in the shape of Huddersfield Giants signing Harry Rushton for use of the elbow whilst prop Jaimin Jolliffe was banned for a head high tackle.
That perhaps sums up why Ireland lost as their indiscipline meant that they couldn’t mount pressure.