The word ‘frivolous’ in the Oxford English Dictionary is explained as: “not having any serious purpose or value.”
When that adjective is applied to an appeal case in Super League, it doesn’t really make that much sense.
Of course there is purpose and value of appealing a ban or charge handed to a player that feels they are on the wrong side of justice.
But, for a number of players during this season, their appeals have often fell on deaf ears at the Operational Rules Tribunal with a number of bans increased…here are all of those.
James Bentley – Leeds Rhinos
There have been better debuts; James Bentley was sent off in his first game for Leeds back in February and was handed a three-match ban for his high tackle. Leeds challenged the Grade C reckless high tackle grading, but the Tribunal rejected the challenge, and added a further game for a frivolous challenge.
Harry Newman – Leeds Rhinos
Back in June, Leeds’ Harry Newman was hit with a two-match ban for a Grade C charge of using aggressive language or body language towards the referee in the same game to which he pleaded not guilty.
The tribunal upheld the Match Review Panel’s two match penalty notice and, finding the challenge to be frivolous, added a further match, deeming the original charge to be correct.
Rhyse Martin – Leeds Rhinos
It wasn’t third time for lucky for Leeds either when the West Yorkshire club appealed Rhyse Martin’s one-match ban for a Grade A high tackle on Castleford forward Alex Mellor in the winner-takes-all fixture at the start of September.
Leeds appealed the suspension but were unsuccessful in doing so. As a result, Martin saw his ban doubled. An independent tribunal found the challenge to be frivolous and issued an additional £500 fine.