Irate Robinson fed up with missed calls

NRL Rd 7 -  Roosters v Storm
Roosters coach Trent Robinson has lashed the Bunker for two crucial calls that may have cost his side the win over Melbourne. Picture: Cameron Spencer/Getty Images

Roosters coach Trent Robinson has taken aim at the Bunker for two crucial decisions he says went against his side that led directly to Storm tries in their 18-12 win at Allianz Stadium.

The Storm scored three tries to two, with all five coming from kicks as neither side was able to generate any attacking fluency in a game that featured 22 errors and 17 penalties.

But Robinson felt his side should have been awarded another two penalties, with the Storm taking advantage of the non-calls to score twice.

The first was the most controversial, with Eliesa Katoa reeling in a Cameron Munster kick to score, but only after teammate Nelson Asofa-Solomona made contact with a defender to push the back-rower towards the ground.

The driver interpretations were changed in the off-season, with the Bunker instructed to award a penalty if they “deem that a player lending weight has assisted in the scoring of a try”.

“The rules are really clear. They came out at the end of the year, and if you lend weight to a tackler in a stationary or forward momentum, then it’ll either be stopped, or if it’s in a try-scoring opportunity then it’ll be a penalty,” Robinson said.

“It was really simple. He (Asofa-Solomona) runs in from a distance, lends weight, touches his player and Jenko (Michael Jennings) and he goes over and scores.”

Robinson was equally frustrated by the Bunker’s decision to award Xavier Coates the winning try despite what he thought was interference by Reimis Smith in the build-up which led to a Joseph Manu error.

NRL head of football Graham Annesley addressed the kick disruptor rule at his briefing on Monday, and Robinson is expecting another explanation next week.

“We just had seven or eight minutes from Graham Annesley on disruptors in kick contests, and Connor Watson was looking at the ball and standing in the position,” he said.

“He didn’t move, he didn’t escort and he just stood in a position. Reimis can go for the ball – that’s fine – but he goes over the back of him, stops going for the ball and pushes Joey Manu in the back because he lost balance.

“If you’re not going for the ball, you can’t contact a player without going for the contest. That’s a disruptor.

“These decisions were really simple tonight.”

NRL Rd 7 -  Roosters v Storm
The Roosters’ attack lacked any spark against the Storm. Picture: Cameron Spencer/Getty Images

The decisions proved telling in the end, but the Roosters didn’t help themselves with poor discipline as their attack lacked any polish without halfback Sam Walker there to call the shots.

Both tries came from kicks, with the hosts unable to register one line-break despite playing the game with an extra man for 10 minutes when Cameron Munster was sent to the sin bin.

“It’s probably on our spine. Our attack shape wasn’t the greatest,” skipper James Tedesco said.

“We worked really hard for each other, but those last plays we obviously need to get better.

“As a spine, it wasn’t good enough from us and me.”