How the NRL's new Bunker system failed within the first round

Riley Morgan
·Sports Reporter
·2-min read
The Sharks (pictured) celebrate a try against the Dragons.
The Sharks (pictured) were awarded a try, but had it reversed after a Jack Bird knock-on, but time wasn't put back on the clock to the point of the infringement. (Getty Images)

The NRL world was left frustrated after learning of a time issue when the referees implemented a new rule in the match between the Dragons and the Sharks in the first round of the season.

NRL great Greg Alexander revealed on Fox Sports' The Big League Wrap that when The Bunker and referee didn't put time back on the clock after reviewing a Cody Ramsey try.

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In the new rule, the Bunker reviewed Ramsey's try after the referee had awarded it and the goal-kicker was preparing for a shot.

This new system, which the referee will ask the Bunker for a quick review, is an attempt to speed up the game.

But after reversing the decision and pulling it back for a Jack Bird indiscretion in the lead-up to the try, the shot clock didn't revert back to the time of the infringement.

While technically not in the rules, the concern was pointed out after Round 1 had finished.

“We had a couple of tries awarded this weekend and one in the Sharks game, which was then overturned by the video referee,” host Lara Pitt said on the show.

“There are some potential concerns about the time on the clock.”

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While it most likely wouldn't have affected the outcome, after the Sharks ran away 32-18 winners, Alexander pointed out it could be a costly mistake in a close game.

“Now this was a no try so it went back to the indiscretion, which was a Jack Bird knock-on. So we go back to the indiscretion, but the time has kept going," Alexander said.

“So we have had a minute and a half just float off into the ether somewhere, which we had in the Canberra game too.”

“Now it hasn’t mattered in these games, but it could," he added.

“We could get to a situation where we are deep in a game close to the 80-minute mark and a team scores a try and time keeps going. We go back to the kicker they say no try, but time is up.

“What we need to do I think is to turn the clock back to where the indiscretion happened.

“So if it was the Jack Bird knock-on we need to go back to that time as well when the indiscretion occurred.”

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