‘Double standards’ exposed in troubling NRL rule controversy

Former NRL star Braith Anasta has questioned “double standards” in the league after similar incidents in two games this weekend were treated very differently by match officials.

In the Roosters’ 32-12 win over the Warriors on Sunday night, the tri-colours were denied a try when James Tedesco was pulled up for a shepherd after running behind one of his teammates with the ball in hand, before passing to Angus Crichton, who crossed the stripe.

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Warriors players weren’t necessarily impeded by Tedesco running behind another Roosters player, but the rule is pretty clear and the video referee called it back.

However, during the Eels’ 36-22 win over the Tigers on Monday, Parramatta halfback Mitchell Moses went unpunished for the same infringement — multiple times on the same play — before setting up a four-pointer.

Moses ran behind three Eels players before grubbering through for Marata Niukore to touch down in the first half, and the try stood.

No Tigers defenders were prevented from tackling Moses because he ran behind teammates — much like the Warriors with Tedesco — but Anasta said that shouldn’t matter and suggested the try should have been disallowed, like it was on Sunday.

Tedesco got pinged but Moses was allowed to scoot behind Clint Gutherson and others.Source:FOX SPORTS

“It was a bit of double standards,” he told Fox League at halftime. “I noticed in last night’s game, Tedesco got pulled up for a shepherd, which I was comfortable with.

“Tedesco just runs behind his player. Not much in it, but the referee called it a shepherd and I’m cool with it. I think that’s been around for 100 years, you can’t run behind your player.

“But we see the next day, after this, we go into the Moses play and Moses skips behind two or three players. He’s allowed to play, doesn’t need to stop, finds his feet, comes up with a kick and they come up with a try.

“Last night it’s no try, today it’s a try. It’s got to be more clear and just black and white.”

Cooper Cronk agreed with Anasta, saying the Tedesco ruling made the matter black and white, that you can’t run behind a teammate when in possession.

“If you run around someone, it’s a penalty,” Cronk said.

The Eels won by 14 points but Blake Ferguson was mocked for a horror first half in which he had a shocking run under the high ball, dropping bombs and falling over multiple times.

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