Josh Hodgson critical of slow ruck speed in GB defeat

James Gordon

Great Britain and Canberra hooker Josh Hodgson joined in the dual-referee debate following criticism of the slow play the ball in Saturday’s test defeat to New Zealand.

English referee Chris Kendall was criticised for allowing the Kiwis particularly to lie on in the tackle, with international rugby league yet to implement the dual-referee system already employed in the NRL.

It has led to calls for the NRL system to become standard, with the debate continuing as to whether it should be implemented in Super League – amidst concerns that there isn’t the volume of officials to make it happen.

Hodgson said: “Referees have a tough job but at the same time it was so slow, for both teams.

“Players are finding their feet and the referees are still letting them (the defending team) pile men on and slow it down when they’re the dominant one in the carry.

“It’s been two weeks on the bounce. I don’t know if that will change if we have a different ref next week.

“I’m not having a whinge because we’ve lost, I thought both teams were trying to capitalise on slowing the ruck speed down.

“But for an entertaining game, you want that ruck speed quicker. It opens the game up and you see a bit more of a free-flowing game.”