Storm boss tells Dragons to 'get over it'


Melbourne chief executive Mark Evans has told St George Illawarra officials to "get over it", claiming dubious calls such as the full-time siren debacle will always be part of the game.

The Dragons are still seething over referee Matt Cecchin's decision to allow the Storm one final play after the siren which resulted in the match-winning try.

The joint-venture outfit has threatened legal action and called for both sides to be awarded competition points, a proposal the NRL has already rejected.

Evans said there would always be incorrect calls but these tended to level out over the course of the season, pointing to the dubious stripping penalty - labelled "disgraceful" by coach Craig Bellamy - which allowed Gold Coast to kick a match-winning penalty goal after the siren in their previous encounter.

"That's sport, isn't it?" Evans said.

"I have been around sport for a long time. Some calls go for you and some go against you. As long as it's not knockout football, they tend to even up.

"You could say, was it a forward pass that got called back that would have put us a long way ahead in the first half? He called it, it was marginal, he said.

"Was the guy who put pressure on Sisa [Waqa] offside on the kick? Marginal, went against us.

"Was it a play the ball before the siren in real time? Marginal.

"That's the game. The week before, there was a strip that wasn't a strip. No-one is going to get 100 per cent of the calls right 100 per cent of the time. It's part of the game. Get over it."

It's not the first time incorrect timekeeping has cost a team this season. Wests Tigers skipper Robbie Farah warned a game would be decided by the issue following Manly's try after the half-time siren a fortnight ago.

Referee's boss Tony Archer admitted the officials got it wrong on Monday night but Cecchin has been retained for the Parramatta-Tigers fixture on Easter Monday.

However, NRL officials didn't publicly admit they got it wrong when Melbourne were dudded against the Titans.

Evans wouldn't be drawn into commenting on the Dragons' reaction but said officiating errors could never be eradicated from sport.

"It's part of the game and has been since time immemorial," Evans said.

"It will be for the next 50 years. Let's get on with it. You get some go for you and some go against you.

"The ones I have great sympathy for are when it happens in finals football and there is no tomorrow," the coach said.

"But we're on a 26-week schedule. You're going to get some good calls and you're going to get some bad calls."

The NRL have indicated they will take measures to ensure the gaffe doesn't happen again, including linking the official time clock to the one used by television stations covering the game so fans have an accurate countdown to the final siren.

The video referee and timekeeper may also give the on-field referees a verbal countdown through their earpieces during the final seconds of the game.


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