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“The most one-sided game I’ve seen by referees” – Wigan Warriors win riles Australian media

The Australian tears and reaction continue after Wigan Warriors impressive win over Penrith Panthers in the World Club Challenge.

Matt Peet’s side won 16-12 on the back of immense defence, lethal and efficient attacking play and overall desire to get the job done, but for many down under they won simply because of the referee.

That’s been the overwhelming response which is a major shame to see given what a strongly-contested game it was.

It was a clash that harked back to the most intense of Ashes games with over 24,000 at the DW roaring every Wigan tackle and every Penrith error, a true England versus Australia mentality.

Those positives have been outdone by much of the rhetoric surrounding Penrith being robbed or Wigan Warriors being helped by the referee, those narratives conveniently forgetting the brilliant Bevan French try that was ruled out also controversially.

Phil Gould has had his say in labelling Jake Wardle a “fibber” whilst ex-NRL man Josh Mansour has called out the “bias refereeing”, but the inability to credit Matt Peet and Wigan Warriors has sadly extended to the press down under too.

One shining example of that is Fox Sports’ match report where they discuss the controversial officiating in a paragraph that has a sub-heading of “Home (Refereeing) Advantages)”.

Sadly, Fox Sports aren’t the only outlet down under to fail to accept defeat graciously.

“Absolutely embarrassing” – Australian media react to Wigan Warriors victory

Wigan Warriors

Much of the reaction has come via social media as is the mark of the modern age and one journalist Martin Gabor was one of those calling out Liam Moore and Wigan Warriors.

After joking that he had got “closer to the line than Wardle” from Sydney, he then followed it up by congratulating the Panthers on a “moral victory” as he labelled the officiating “abysmal”.

The Sporting Base – NRL, a dedicated NRL news site that operates on X, formerly Twitter, shared footage of Wigan’s second try which was a flowing move that exposed Penrith’s soft left edge.

They captioned their post: “Patrick Mahomes would’ve been proud of that pass to the winger,” before following it up with footage of Wardle’s controversial try which they called “the worst call we’ve seen in a game of rugby league”.

More negative reaction came on X as ‘Rugby League News’ shared thoughts to their thousands of followers belittling Wigan Warriors’ win.

They argued: “Last year St Helen’s won fair.. I don’t think Wigan can say the same this year, Panthers were poor and Wigan played at their best but one of the most one sided games I’ve seen by the referees.”

Fox League doubled down on their notion of refereeing advantages by posting a graphic asking if the Panthers were robbed, once again discrediting a brilliant Wigan Warriors performance.

All these excuses come after Jarome Luai had told Sky Sports how well-prepared the Panthers were for the game as well ironically.

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