Why Samoa star escaped ban going into World Cup Final as Sam Tomkins cited by match review panel

The big talk after Samoa defeated England in the Rugby League World Cup semi-final at the Emirates on Saturday from a disciplinary stand point centred around Junior Paulo.

The Samoa skipper escaped a ban going into the game due to an appeal but many felt he could be suspended for the final after he and Royce Hunt were involved in a dangerous tip tackle on Tom Burgess early in the game.

He copped a yellow card but escaped a ban as both he and Hunt received cautions for the tackle from the disciplinary panel.

Some suggested that it should have been a red card but England boss Shaun Wane pushed back against this after the game.

All of this meant that Jarome Luai’s role in what the panel described “fracas” was overlooked.

The Penrith Panthers star has been Samoa’s best player during the tournament and he was cited by the panel but escaped a suspension due to the fact he threw no punches.

As the panel said: “Player grabs hold of opponent and pulls to the ground, but no punches thrown.”

Sam Tomkins was involved in the same incident but equally escaped a ban but was cited with the panel describing his role as: “Player brushes players head with hand which causes opponent to react.”

England teammate and Wigan Warriors star John Bateman meanwhile was cautioned for dangerous contact earlier in the game.

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