Tim Sheens blasts officials for policing of the ruck

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Tiger Watto
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Tim Sheens blasts officials for policing of the ruck

Post by Tiger Watto » Fri 25 Feb, 2011 9:40 pm

By Steve Jancetic
AAP February 25, 2011 6:36PM

Wests Tigers coach Tim Sheens claims the NRL is headed down the path of rugby union with its unsustainable crackdown on play the ball infringements.

Last weekend's Tigers-Parramatta trial was marred by a spate of penalties for illegalities at the ruck, with Sheens claiming whistleblowers had to allow the players a chance to play.

"... there's a flow in the game and an understanding, there's an advantage rule played in this game and you've got to play to the feel of the game as well as play to the rules of the game, otherwise we're playing rugby," Sheens said ahead of Saturday night's Foundation Cup clash against Sydney Roosters.

"And if you want to see 40 penalties a game go and play rugby."

Referees are working under a directive to clean up the play the ball, with players being forced to make contact with their foot and not move off the mark.

The result has been several costly penalties with teams coughing up possession in poor field position and Sheens is adamant the players in the middle were making things too hard for themselves.

"I believe it's going to be too hard an area to police to the degree that I think they're going to try and police it, put it that way," Sheens said.

"There's going to be plenty of phone calls (from coaches to referees boss Bill Harrigan) in the early part of the season."

With this weekend representing the last batch of trial matches before the opening round of the season, Sheens was hopeful that the situation would be sorted out before too long.

"These things will work themselves out,' he said.

"I suppose if there's five weeks of protest from the media and the coaches things will settle down, that's generally how these things happen.

"Every year we start with some sort of a blitz, last year it was the downtown rule, I think the year before it was the decoy runner ... and we argued and argued for the first five weeks and then it settled down and by the end of the year it was a lot different to what it started."

Sheens will welcome Tim Moltzen back to the fold on Saturday night with the talented utility to start off the bench after missing much of 2010 due to a knee reconstruction.

Moltzen is expected to see time at both fullback and halfback, while former Canterbury-Bankstown winger Matt Utai can lock up a round one start with a good display with Beau Ryan's availability uncertain.

"(Utai's) looking good and hopefully he can give us that bit of impact out on the wing," Tigers skipper Robbie Farah said.

"We've got a couple of solid wingers now in Utai and Lote (Tuqiri) so it'll be like having a couple of extra forwards on the field."
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Geo.
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Post by Geo. » Fri 25 Feb, 2011 9:48 pm

Brilliant Tim........

Give it to them.. :bash
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Post by innsaneink » Fri 25 Feb, 2011 9:56 pm

After watching us for about an hour last saturday night I
found myself wondering if this new interpretation would
hinder us and the way we play, cramp our style.
A bit too early to be whining imo.

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Post by KingOvKingz09 » Fri 25 Feb, 2011 10:08 pm

give it to em sheensy :twisted:
Im back!! oh its true.... Its damn true!!!

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Post by Tigersmurf » Fri 25 Feb, 2011 10:51 pm

Suppose this means we lose the penalty count tomorrow night!


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Post by willow » Fri 25 Feb, 2011 11:06 pm

innsaneink wrote:After watching us for about an hour last saturday night I
found myself wondering if this new interpretation would
hinder us and the way we play, cramp our style.
A bit too early to be whining imo.
In seasons past I would have argued against it since the Tigers lacked the size in the forwards and were regularly dominated with refs letting a lot of wrestling happen in the ruck, which really nullified teams like the Tigers who are so quick and slick around the ruck. Last year things were a bit different with the added size in the Tigers pack and improved consistency.

This play the ball rule could cost teams games though, I can see tired players in the backend of a game giving away a penalty 20 metres out right in front with 2 minutes left on the clock in tight games...And you just know every coach and a lot of fans would be blowing up about it.

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Post by MacDougall » Sat 26 Feb, 2011 12:01 am

At the end of the day, the onus is on the players to avoid making illegal plays. As long as Sheens does his job and coaches the players to remain in control of their football while at the play the ball, then we're fine. This sounds like Sheens overlooked the importance of this rule change until last week and now is looking to shift the blame onto "whistle happy referees".

The referees have been telling us for a month now that they are going to stop players walking off the mark and clean up the ruck, and so they should. Last year the attacking teams were getting an incredible amount of unfair advantage from walking off the mark and stepping off to the side and only were penalised an extremely small amount of the time. As long as Sheens teaches the players to stand up and play the ball, we're fine.

The Tigers are the best team in the comp at creating opportunities from nothing and if this rule change slows down attacking momentum then it will assist the Tigers more than most. Sure a lot of the Tigers scoring comes off the back of a few speedy play the balls, but so it does for every other team. The Tigers need speed and momentum less than the other teams.

Our insecurities in defense are also highlighted by our poor reaction to fast (and often times in the past illegal) play the balls. This won't happen anymore.

I think they should treat it like this. Police the ruck heavily when the attacking team is in the opposition half, treat it like they always have when the team in possession is coming out of their own half.

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Post by Yossarian » Sat 26 Feb, 2011 12:01 am

Tigersmurf wrote:Suppose this means we lose the penalty count tomorrow night!
Probably the reverse. Most teams do alright with the refs after their coach has a spray.

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Post by supercoach » Sat 26 Feb, 2011 12:12 am

Sheen's biggest obstacle will be Harrigan. The guy is ego driven and thinks he is the only person who has a knowledge of the rules and how they should be applied. Finch was useless but Harrigan is dangerous. Their will be a few cement trucks ordered durring the course of the season!!

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Post by redemption » Sat 26 Feb, 2011 7:02 am

MacDougall wrote:At the end of the day, the onus is on the players to avoid making illegal plays. As long as Sheens does his job and coaches the players to remain in control of their football while at the play the ball, then we're fine. This sounds like Sheens overlooked the importance of this rule change until last week and now is looking to shift the blame onto "whistle happy referees".......

....... The Tigers need speed and momentum less than the other teams. .....

......
Brilliant!!!

(PS - are you fair dinkum MacD?????)

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Post by Gary Bakerloo » Sat 26 Feb, 2011 8:15 am

If they are penalising teams for walking off the mark and not playing the ball with their foot, then I applaud the referees. Nothing is more frustrating than seeing a defender pull off an awesome tackle to only see the attacker walk another metre or two and the defender gets penalised for being offside when going to marker.

You may remember that Galloway did it against Manly last year (who are perpetual offenders in this area, especially Watmough) at Gosford. Smashed someone, stood on the mark and the attacker played the ball two metres from the mark. The Manly player was penalised, but it does not happen enough.

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Post by redemption » Sat 26 Feb, 2011 8:28 am

Gary Bakerloo wrote:If they are penalising teams for walking off the mark and not playing the ball with their foot, then I applaud the referees. Nothing is more frustrating than seeing a defender pull off an awesome tackle to only see the attacker walk another metre or two and the defender gets penalised for being offside when going to marker.

You may remember that Galloway did it against Manly last year (who are perpetual offenders in this area, especially Watmough) at Gosford. Smashed someone, stood on the mark and the attacker played the ball two metres from the mark. The Manly player was penalised, but it does not happen enough.
The stipulation this year is not specifically about walking off the mark (despite the tone of the article) - it is all about touching the ball with your foot when playing the ball!!!!

Simple it may seem - but when blokes are blowing late in the game we don't need a penalty-thon!!!

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Post by magpiecol » Sat 26 Feb, 2011 10:32 am

redemption wrote:
Gary Bakerloo wrote:If they are penalising teams for walking off the mark and not playing the ball with their foot, then I applaud the referees. Nothing is more frustrating than seeing a defender pull off an awesome tackle to only see the attacker walk another metre or two and the defender gets penalised for being offside when going to marker.

You may remember that Galloway did it against Manly last year (who are perpetual offenders in this area, especially Watmough) at Gosford. Smashed someone, stood on the mark and the attacker played the ball two metres from the mark. The Manly player was penalised, but it does not happen enough.
The stipulation this year is not specifically about walking off the mark (despite the tone of the article) - it is all about touching the ball with your foot when playing the ball!!!!

Simple it may seem - but when blokes are blowing late in the game we don't need a penalty-thon!!!

Pity that it was not done in the game against Saints last year!!! Their fullback tried to play the ball and missed it 3 times, right in front of the posts. We got done by 1 point.

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Post by sunshine coast tiger » Sat 26 Feb, 2011 10:46 am

magpiecol wrote:
redemption wrote:
Gary Bakerloo wrote:If they are penalising teams for walking off the mark and not playing the ball with their foot, then I applaud the referees. Nothing is more frustrating than seeing a defender pull off an awesome tackle to only see the attacker walk another metre or two and the defender gets penalised for being offside when going to marker.

You may remember that Galloway did it against Manly last year (who are perpetual offenders in this area, especially Watmough) at Gosford. Smashed someone, stood on the mark and the attacker played the ball two metres from the mark. The Manly player was penalised, but it does not happen enough.
The stipulation this year is not specifically about walking off the mark (despite the tone of the article) - it is all about touching the ball with your foot when playing the ball!!!!

Simple it may seem - but when blokes are blowing late in the game we don't need a penalty-thon!!!

Pity that it was not done in the game against Saints last year!!! Their fullback tried to play the ball and missed it 3 times, right in front of the posts. We got done by 1 point.
There is no way a referee will make call like that in a big game!! The referees in that game wouldn't make the call about the knees in Lotes back.

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Post by Balmain Bug » Sat 26 Feb, 2011 11:15 am

supercoach wrote:Sheen's biggest obstacle will be Harrigan. The guy is ego driven and thinks he is the only person who has a knowledge of the rules and how they should be applied. Finch was useless but Harrigan is dangerous. Their will be a few cement trucks ordered durring the course of the season!!
True
Wests Tigers colours are Black, White & Orange. Balmain are Black & Orange. Wests Tigers are not Balmain. Please take note Wests Tigers CEO.

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Post by MacDougall » Sat 26 Feb, 2011 12:14 pm

redemption wrote:
MacDougall wrote:At the end of the day, the onus is on the players to avoid making illegal plays. As long as Sheens does his job and coaches the players to remain in control of their football while at the play the ball, then we're fine. This sounds like Sheens overlooked the importance of this rule change until last week and now is looking to shift the blame onto "whistle happy referees".......

....... The Tigers need speed and momentum less than the other teams. .....

......
Brilliant!!!

(PS - are you fair dinkum MacD?????)
Well yeah I am. Momentum created by quick play the balls and sloppy ruckwork is how the majority of points are scored by all teams. The Tigers have other ways of scoring. If the game is slowed down the Tigers have an advantage over other teams when it comes to creativity in the halves and creating overlaps. Sure we are deadly when the opposition is on the back foot, but every team is great in that situation. It's the fact that the Tigers are great off standing starts as well whereas other teams don't have the fortune of having Benji Marshall and Robbie Farah's ability to create overlaps and get our centres and wingers around the opposition.

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