Scrutiny of Super League’s referees, both the pictures, and Odsal’s final game all attribute this week.
It has been a tough week to get Super League’s game officials, that possess a task without the onslaught of criticism they’ve faced from several quarters.
On Friday, St Helens proprietor Eamonn McManus caused a stir with his comments Concerning the appointment of Robert Hicks to the Challenge Cup final and some of the decisions the Saddleworth referee made at Wembley for the game against Castleford Tigers.
Those comments have observed McManus – who released a statement on Sunday through the website of the club reiterating his viewpoints – referred to the RFL’s compliance team.
Wakefield Trinity head coach Chris Chester didn’t hold back on Sunday having been left fuming from the situation which led to Liam Marshall scoring an attempt in Sunday’s 24-16 defeat.
Referee Scott Mikalauskas neglected to guarantee Wigan winger Marshall tapped the ball on the suitable markers from a restart before sprinting the length of this area to score his second try of the game – a determination which incensed Chester.
“You have got a referee who is on the spot and just let Liam Marshall tap it wherever he wanted,” Chester said post-match.
“I don’t know whether the principles have changed, however it’s only a disgraceful call, a disgraceful telephone number. It’s a call you should not find wrong.”
That conquer as just one of three groups matches left in the season Wakefield, that have just two wins in their past 13 Super League games.
A victory in Perpignan over Catalans Dragons watched although Huddersfield Giants did similarly by winning 22-12 around the street at Hull FC, Hull Kingston Rovers stay in that group.
It means side London Broncos must win both of their remaining games off to Rovers – that will be live on Sky Sports that Friday – to have any hope of remaining up after a 36-10 defeat at home to Leeds Rhinos on Sunday.
The Broncos have defied many naysayers to be still in with a chance of avoiding the fall and head coach Danny Ward has supported his team to climb to the struggle .
“The boys have been ruined because they know they’ve not performed well and they have dropped, but it’s a short turnaround and we’ve got to win the next couple of,” Ward said.
“They’ve been in this situation before and hopefully they can draw on these experiences. It’s must-win time, it is black and white so that it depends how the boys respond to that and they deal with this pressure and it will get the best out of them”
Catalans’ defeat to Hull KR eliminated them from contention leaving four teams jostling for standing behind League Leaders’ Shield winners St Helens.
Castleford Tigers are two things beyond the play-off areas after Friday’s 4-0 defeat to Saints, while Salford Red Devils, Hull FC along with Warrington Wolves are locked on 30 points.
Nonetheless, it’s currently the Grand Final winners win away to Wakefield of last year.
From rivals St Helens – in their 10 games since losing in Magic Weekend to Warrington, the Warriors are on a run which has seen them suffer 1 defeat – after a start to their title defence.
Head trainer Adrian Lam knows the job isn’t completed yet, but is thrilled with the way his side have found their groove as the season builds towards the company end.
“The dressing area’s quite excited at the present time,” Lam said. “They understand, they have been prepped across how significant this was and also the journey that we have been to get here.
“I didn’t wish to mention another hand when we’d of lost, a possible prospect of missing out about the five together. That’s how close it is.
“Everyone’s worked extremely hard and I think we’re in a fantastic place at the moment.”
As they bid farewell to Odsal, house since 1934 it was an emotional weekend for the players, staff and fans of Bradford Bulls.
The ground that has hosted global Tests and once watched over 100,000 fans cram into it for a Challenge Cup final playoff will now have its own doors closed after becoming prohibitively expensive to the club, with the Bulls moving 11 miles off to ground-share in Dewsbury Rams’ Tetley’s Stadium for 2020.
The 7,531 crowd in attendance Sunday watched Bradford sign off in the ground in a top since they defeated Sheffield Eagles 30-10 in the Championship and chairman Andrew Chalmers has pledged the club will return to the city.
As yet there are no firm plans as to where or if this is.
“It’s sad, but I do not know the financing in supreme detail so we have only made to keep this club alive and kicking and hopefully progressing,” Bulls head coach John Kear said following the win over Sheffield.
“That is what we will be trying to perform at Dewsbury next year before finally we return someplace in Bradford that is befitting of a team that’s difficult for Super League or is in Super League.”
Spare a thought for Barrow Raiders, that had to face the might of Toronto Wolfpack at Canada with 14 players on Saturday.
The Raiders’ squad has been decimated by injuries in recent weeks anyway and the had many players that were unavailable to make the excursion that was more than 3,000-mile.
Given those conditions, the conquer – with Barrow’s points all coming from Jamie Dallimore in his 100th appearance for the club against the leaders that are full-time is no disgrace.
Unfortunately in the second tier, this reduction confirmed that their relegation to League One following two decades back for the Raiders. But, there is set to be one Cumbrian representative in the Championship next year.
The 74-6 win at home to West Wales Raiders over the weekend of whitehaven means they need to avoid defeat to Coventry Bears on Saturday to seal advertising.
Neighbours Workington Town could be coming up as well last year, after falling if they could successfully navigate the play-offs.