Broncos and Maroons fullback Reece Walsh has come under fire for a 'disgusting' spray picked up on the broadcast microphones, but the youngster has come out and claimed it wasn't aimed at the referee. Walsh caught the ire of the NRL world in State of Origin Game II after firing up the home crowd following his straight send-off at the end of the game.
And the youngster is once again at the centre of attention after microphones caught him sending a spray towards someone on the field after an obstruction cost Selwyn Cobbo a penalty against the Titans. Cameras panned towards the Broncos defence after the penalty, before Walsh was heard yelling the F and C words towards someone on the field, looking towards the referee.
The referee then marched Broncos 10 metres after hearing the outburst. Walsh appeared to complain to the referee over the penalty. Many alleged Walsh directed the spray at the referee, which was the result of the 10 metres. "Adam, he will go next one," the referee told Adam Reynolds of the incident.
On Monday morning the NRL confirmed Walsh would go to the judiciary over the incident, but both Reynolds and Walsh have both taken to social media after the game to deny the tirade was directed at the referee. Reynolds was the first to post under a video of the incident and clarified what he thought went down.
"Show the full clip," Reynolds said under a Fox Sports video of the incident. "Was talking to a player on the other team."
"I was not taking to the ref, I clearly say that," Walsh added. "Can also see Patty come over and talk to me." Walsh could deem himself fortunate the referee didn't take further action with his teammates also trying to clam him down as they retreated the 10 metres.
Fans have been left fuming at the incident and feel regardless, the words have no place in the game of NRL with the referee mic'd up during the game. Fox Sports commentator Warren Smith pointed out that Andrew Johns was given four weeks for a verbal tirade at a referee in the past. Although it is unclear who the spray was directed at.
Can’t believe Reece said that! 🔥🤯
Reece Walsh could be in some hot water for these comments, although he has defended himself saying it was toward a teammate and not the official #walsh #ref #reecewalsh #broncos pic.twitter.com/EE7rWrpE9U
— The SPORTS BOOK (@AcesInSpades3) June 25, 2023
Has Reece Walsh become the biggest pelican in the comp? #NRLBroncosTitans
— Jake Carden (@JakeCarden13) June 25, 2023
Reece Walsh the biggest sook in the game? Two clear correct calls from the referee and he can’t handle them 🤦🏻 #NRLBroncosTitans
— Rugby League News (@RugbyLeagueNews) June 25, 2023
Very clear mic on this ref. If only we had the same technology in the UK. Be interesting to say what the NRL disciplinary do to Walsh after allowing him to play after Origin headbut (unless that hasn’t been dealt with yet). https://t.co/KgkLBcONRy
— Joanne Coles (@JoCatColes) June 25, 2023
For context regarding Reece Walsh’s alleged use of a profanity directed at the referee in the Broncos loss to the Titans today, Andrew Johns was hit with a charge that carried a 4 week suspension for the exact same thing in 2006 after verbally abusing Matt Cecchin.#NRL
— Warren Smith (@WarrenSmithFOX) June 25, 2023
A player may at times say it to another player, but almost never to a ref. In any case, disgraceful foul language.
— Graham (@graham_gAndrews) June 25, 2023
The Broncos went on to lose to the Titans 20-14 to fall behind the Panthers in the race for minor premiers.
Reece Walsh under fire for State of Origin reaction
Many fans were surprised to see Walsh playing on the weekend after he escaped a ban for a headbutt in the Maroons' win over the Blues in a fiery Origin clash. In Origin, Josh Addo-Carr was given 10 minutes in the bin having thrown the first punch. And in bizarre scenes, Addo-Carr kissed his badge and taunted the crowd as he went down the tunnel.
But this was to be topped from the 20-year-old Maroons fullback. Walsh was handed a straight send off when Jarome Luai and him head-butted each other. And he was clearly still pumping with adrenaline as he stirred up the Queensland faithful on his exit.
Walsh then kissed the badge and gestured for the crowd to cheer as he was sent off in what will go down as infamous Origin scenes. Walsh's behaviour became the talking point after Origin II.
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