September 15, 2014, 2:52 pm
The ruffling of Melbourne Storm captain Cameron Smith’s hair has also ruffled the feathers of coach Craig Bellamy, who declared it is time to remove “disrespectful acts” from the game.
Canterbury Bulldogs captain Michael Ennis took on the familiar role of instigator during the first half of his side’s elimination final win over the Storm at AAMI Park on Sunday.
After an uncharacteristic error from Smith, Ennis approached and provocatively rubbed his opposing captain’s hair.
Following the match, Bellamy agreed with the sentiments of Channel Nine commentator Brett Finch, who reportedly labelled the act a “lack of respect”. “I do [agree] and I think it is,” he said. “I think there’s too much of that happens in our game these days.”
Bellamy also referred to an incident where Storm centre Mahe Fonua paused unnecessarily before putting the ball down for a try in the club’s recent win over the Brisbane Broncos. "I think that is a lack of respect for your opposition as well,” he said. “Those things are just going to inflame incidents when you push a guy after a try when there is no need to push a guy, when you tap them on the head when they make a mistake. "To me it’s a thing which has crept into our game and it’s only the players who can stamp it out of the game.
“I’m old school and I don’t like that but it seems to be something for generation Y or whatever. “To me it’s a lack of respect and you should be respecting your opposition.”