“The referee goes and does that” – Pundit slams Chris Kendall decision

The first Challenge Cup Final without Leeds Rhinos, Wigan Warriors, Warrington Wolves and St Helens was laced with controversy as Leigh Leopards and Hull KR served up a real classic in a game neither deserved to lose.

But there had to be a winner and a magic moment from Lachlan Lam in golden point as he nailed his first professional drop goal gave the Leopards a famous win at the expense of Hull KR and their first Challenge Cup since 1971.

However, as aforementioned, there was more than a little controversy such as the decision to not award Hull KR a penalty try after a Tom Briscoe error and of course the yellow card for Elliot Minchella.

This has divided fans and pundits alike and on BBC Johnathon Davies slammed the decision from Chris Kendall suggesting that it spoilt the final.

“I think that is a little harsh. I can understand they are trying to protect the player but there was no malice in that. They should just get on with the game,” he said.

“It’s getting a little pathetic now, players trying to get other players sent off. Just get on with the game.

“This is a Challenge Cup Final, players work their socks off to get into this position and the referee then goes and does that.

“For me that is very unlucky, the elbow was there, he didn’t lead with it though. I think that is harsh.

“Yes it is clumsy, the ref said there was no wrapping of the arm, but that’s a big call. The coach won’t be happy but this is a big 10 minutes now.”

Despite this, it is hard to argue against the decision given that replays showed that Elliot Minchella made contact with Ben Reynolds with the elbow.

In fact, had the contact been a little higher up he could have faced a red card for direct contact to the head.

To Hull KR’s credit they hung in there and and ended the half just two points behind the Leopards with the score 10-8 giving the platform to fight back and level matters in the second half.