NRL reporter Paul Kent has ripped into AFL legends Garry Lyon and Tim Watson after they took aim at rugby league following its push to restart amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The NRL is set to resume its competition on Thursday, well ahead of other Australian codes, and ARL Chairman Peter V’landys has even expressed his desire to get crowds into the stadiums in the near future.
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League’s relentless push even prompted V’landys to admit he is ‘giggling’ at how far ahead the code is compared to its cross-code rival AFL.
But Watson specifically hit back at the NRL’s approach, claiming it was less complicated for the code to get started because it’s geographically easier to bring the teams together.
“Look, I don’t want to start a war between the AFL and the NRL, but I would just like to point this out to push-ahead Pete,” Watson said on SEN.
“It is a little more complex with a national game, accommodating teams from five different states as opposed to the NRL which has people in Queensland, New South Wales and New Zealand.”
Despite Watson mistakenly leaving out the ACT and Victoria as locations for teams, Lyon doubled down.
“That’s all right, push-ahead Pete is on a nice wave of momentum at the moment,” Lyon added.
“I don’t think they’ll miss the crowds much either by the way given not many turn up.”
Kent savages AFL legends
This prompted Daily Telegraph and Fox Sports NRL 360 journalist Kent to slam the duo for their view.
“You had two halfwits in Melbourne yesterday sh**potting rugby league, Tim Watson and Garry Lyon carrying on,” Kent said.
“Pull your heads in, rugby league’s done a great thing getting up and running when they have.
“They’ve left the AFL flat-footed, the AFL is trying to play catch up. Rugby league, for the first time in years, it was ahead of AFL in the way it ran the game and how it was being administered.”
The NRL will return on Thursday with the Parramatta Eels and the Brisbane Broncos to kick-off the restart.