Storm coach Craig Bellamy has hit out at the “inconsistency” surrounding the officiating of crusher tackles.
Melbourne young gun Cooper Johns and prop Albert Vete were both placed on report for separate incidents involving crusher-type tackles during the first half of Thursday night’s loss to the Eels.
NRL’s head of football Graham Annesley on Tuesday spoke out against the use of the illegal tackle and said he hoped the game would “reverse” its current trend.
“We have seen a concerning increase in the crusher-type tackles in recent years and the commission has approved stronger deterrents to reverse this trend,” he said.
Eels v Storm Round 15: Presser – Brad Arthur
“Crusher tackles are dangerous and carry with them the real potential for catastrophic consequences to the tackled player.”
Eels coach Brad Arthur said after the match that none of his players go down easy when asked if there was an attempt to milk penalties.
“What do you mean go down easy? I’d have to have a look at it. Nobody’s deliberately staying down mate,” Arthur said.
But Bellamy denied his side was “consciously” looking to put on crusher-type tackles.
The Storm coach took aim at the refereeing and felt they missed a certain incident on his own side during the match.
“I suppose by the definition of whether they are [crusher tackles] or not, you do get people turn in tackles,” Bellamy said.
“I don’t think anyone consciously goes out to do crushers tackles on the opposition.
“With all due respect there was one-on-one of our blokes that didn’t get picked up, and our bloke got up and played the ball. At the end of the day that’s out of my jurisdiction, but whatever will be will be.”
When asked if he agreed with Arthur’s comments that the Eels weren’t deliberately staying down, Bellamy said: “I think I disagree with Brad on that.”
Bellamy was then rushed out of the press conference due to a late flight for his club.
As he walked out of the room, he responded with: “It’s the inconsistency I would call that.”