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Thread: Future finals referees

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    Default Future finals referees

    Following the justifiable furore following Hicks' appalling performance on Saturday, and the simple fact that it appears - from what we see week in week out - that our referees really do seem in need of some enhanced coaching, I'm wondering if it would be an idea for the RFL to pay to bring in an Aussie ref / touch judge / video ref team in for future finals?

    Might not eradicate mistakes but it would go a very long way towards any allegations of bias, undue influence etc.

    There would be a few areas to iron out - Aussies being used to officiating with two referees for instance, cost implications etc - but perhaps something the RFL should consider?
    "The great fallacy is that the game is first and last about winning. It is nothing of the kind. The game is about glory, it is about doing things in style and with a flourish, about going out and beating the other lot, not waiting for them to die of boredom." Danny Blanchflower.
    Might have been written by a footballer about football - but never a truer word............

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    Quote Originally Posted by warringtonsaint View Post
    Following the justifiable furore following Hicks' appalling performance on Saturday, and the simple fact that it appears - from what we see week in week out - that our referees really do seem in need of some enhanced coaching, I'm wondering if it would be an idea for the RFL to pay to bring in an Aussie ref / touch judge / video ref team in for future finals?

    Might not eradicate mistakes but it would go a very long way towards any allegations of bias, undue influence etc.

    There would be a few areas to iron out - Aussies being used to officiating with two referees for instance, cost implications etc - but perhaps something the RFL should consider?
    Total non-starter. Hicks wasn’t bias, just performed poorly on the day. It would undermine every official in what is a tough job. More apt would be what can the game do to get two refs on the pitch like the NRL.

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    Quote Originally Posted by eddiewaringsflatcap View Post
    Total non-starter. Hicks wasn’t bias, just performed poorly on the day. It would undermine every official in what is a tough job. More apt would be what can the game do to get two refs on the pitch like the NRL.
    It may well give them the encouragement to improve. FWIW I don't think it was just a question of Hicks having a poor performance - it'll be forever tainted due to his recent buddy / buddy act with Wire.

    And two crap refs don't equal one good one. In my opinion, of course
    "The great fallacy is that the game is first and last about winning. It is nothing of the kind. The game is about glory, it is about doing things in style and with a flourish, about going out and beating the other lot, not waiting for them to die of boredom." Danny Blanchflower.
    Might have been written by a footballer about football - but never a truer word............

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    Quote Originally Posted by warringtonsaint View Post
    Following the justifiable furore following Hicks' appalling performance on Saturday, and the simple fact that it appears - from what we see week in week out - that our referees really do seem in need of some enhanced coaching, I'm wondering if it would be an idea for the RFL to pay to bring in an Aussie ref / touch judge / video ref team in for future finals?

    Might not eradicate mistakes but it would go a very long way towards any allegations of bias, undue influence etc.

    There would be a few areas to iron out - Aussies being used to officiating with two referees for instance, cost implications etc - but perhaps something the RFL should consider?
    I see where you're coming from, but as eddie.wfc said above, it would undermine our own officials...Unless we could come to some sort of reciprocal arrangement.

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    Quote Originally Posted by KentishBarry View Post
    I see where you're coming from, but as eddie.wfc said above, it would undermine our own officials...Unless we could come to some sort of reciprocal arrangement.
    Barry, I think Hicks undermined himself irrevocably on Saturday......although the RFL do seem to think differently given that he's got a key game this weekend as well!
    Agreed though, a reciprocal arrangement may take some of the implications out of it - but could you see the Aussies wanting any of ours??
    "The great fallacy is that the game is first and last about winning. It is nothing of the kind. The game is about glory, it is about doing things in style and with a flourish, about going out and beating the other lot, not waiting for them to die of boredom." Danny Blanchflower.
    Might have been written by a footballer about football - but never a truer word............

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    Quote Originally Posted by warringtonsaint View Post
    Barry, I think Hicks undermined himself irrevocably on Saturday......although the RFL do seem to think differently given that he's got a key game this weekend as well!
    Agreed though, a reciprocal arrangement may take some of the implications out of it - but could you see the Aussies wanting any of ours??
    No, not really!
    ...But do the Aussie fans feel the same about their lot?

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    I think the RFL need a recruitment drive to employ more officials and fast track towards 2 refs (Primary + Secondary) to control games. There is far too much going on for the current ref system to get everything right, there were 4 major errors made by Hicks in that cup final game would he have been in better position to make judgement if a second ref to take some of the workload.

    P.S. On Hicks himself there is Granada TV interview piece on his contact with the Warrington Fan regards the death threat, I don't know if anyone has seen it . He came across as a really great honest intelligent bloke and what he explained about the game left me in no doubt that this bloke is very unlikely to show any bias to any particular team.

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    Quote Originally Posted by STIDDY View Post
    P.S. On Hicks himself there is Granada TV interview piece on his contact with the Warrington Fan regards the death threat, I don't know if anyone has seen it . He came across as a really great honest intelligent bloke and what he explained about the game left me in no doubt that this bloke is very unlikely to show any bias to any particular team.
    I saw that, but it seems very few did, so my reference to it was met with a full on pitch fork march on Twitter by a load of 60 year old women. One even said she knows where I live and is going to kill my dogs. (I'm worried by that more because I don't have dogs, someone's innocent dog may be getting lynched)

    Hicks is a referee who you cannot doubt the integrity of, but he just had an awful day on Saturday. He had a mantra to have a fast, open and free flowing game. That's where the mistake came from with the Knowles try. He'd refer that to be sure 99 times out of 100, but he didn't then because he was trying to be decisive and keep the game going. I think he realises this himself watching the replay and like Saints his reaction to the adversity just wasn't at the level it needed to be. His ignoring the markers needing to be square and offsides bordered on the farcical and I'm sure he knows it. (Both sides here, not just Warrington).

    Hicks will be devestated by what happened at the weekend I'm sure. He was rightly given the biggest game of the season to reward his season, but like Saints absolutely blew it. Saints need to be very assertive with the RFL that he's not put under any further pressure now by refereeing any of our play off games or the Grand Final if we stumble upon some miracle and make it there. He won't be allowed to admit he made an error by the RFL and we've all seen the other referees and former players etc circling the wagons around him claiming he was perfect at the weekend in every regard, but he'll be gutted.

    What would genuinely help though is if the players were a big more professional and disciplined. Our ruck is an absolute disgrace, most clubs in SL make as many metres after they are tackled than they do before it with the amount of moving off the mark. The play the ball itself is horrendous, just throw wildly through the legs and the markers are never square. If you watch a decent game in the NRL it's like watching a completely different sport in that regard. They don't move off the mark as much, they don't rush the play the ball and they aren't constantly not square at the ruck. Whether the two referees system helps with that I don't know, but it's a possibility.

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    Officials, Umpires, Judges whatever you want to call them there is always going to be people who are not happy with the way a game has been officiated. You only have to listen to the football phone-ins and the number of people who moan about the standard of Ref’s and it’s the worst they’ve ever seen. The people who are saying that were saying the same in the 70’s, 80’s, 90’s, 2000’s. Bloody hell people have even been moaning about the standard of umpires at the cricket.

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    Quote Originally Posted by STIDDY View Post
    I think the RFL need a recruitment drive to employ more officials and fast track towards 2 refs (Primary + Secondary) to control games. There is far too much going on for the current ref system to get everything right, there were 4 major errors made by Hicks in that cup final game would he have been in better position to make judgement if a second ref to take some of the workload.

    P.S. On Hicks himself there is Granada TV interview piece on his contact with the Warrington Fan regards the death threat, I don't know if anyone has seen it . He came across as a really great honest intelligent bloke and what he explained about the game left me in no doubt that this bloke is very unlikely to show any bias to any particular team.
    I’ve said from the start that it’s the system that needs improvement. Individuals will always make mistakes and so checks and balances need to be in place. I originally suggested copying the Rugby Union video ref protocols but I think that people have pointed out difficulties with that on another thread. I’m not that knowledgeable about RU procedures but when I watch the odd international, refereeing seems to be better.
    Last edited by Suttoner; 28th August 2019 at 18:28. Reason: also to always

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    Quote Originally Posted by STIDDY View Post
    I think the RFL need a recruitment drive to employ more officials and fast track towards 2 refs (Primary + Secondary) to control games. There is far too much going on for the current ref system to get everything right, there were 4 major errors made by Hicks in that cup final game would he have been in better position to make judgement if a second ref to take some of the workload.

    P.S. On Hicks himself there is Granada TV interview piece on his contact with the Warrington Fan regards the death threat, I don't know if anyone has seen it . He came across as a really great honest intelligent bloke and what he explained about the game left me in no doubt that this bloke is very unlikely to show any bias to any particular team.
    Totally agree with the first point , there is a need for a secondary official . Given the issues around recruitment and affordability i don't seen it happening any time soon.

    On the second point regarding Hicks , i don't believe Hicks or any of the current refs are biased. Every clubs fans have the same rhetoric that refs hate ‘ them’ and and are in favour of A. N Other.

    Refs make mistakes , however the mistakes made in the final particularly the Try was simply inexcusable and Hicks should be reprimanded appropriately.

    As this is my first post since Saturday its only right i congratulate Warrington on a great win . Thoroughly deserved and have every right to brag!

    In the face of adversity , its time for cool heads ,remain positive about our fantastic team . Get behind our coach and players and pray we meet warrington in the grand final. There is one way to pay them back .

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    Quote Originally Posted by Suttoner View Post
    I’ve said from the start that it’s the system that needs improvement. Individuals will also make mistakes and so checks and balances need to be in place. I originally suggested copying the Rugby Union video ref protocols but I think that people have pointed out difficulties with that on another thread. I’m not that knowledgeable about RU procedures but when I watch the odd international, refereeing seems to be better.
    They just need to refine the video ref piece. Firstly, borrow from football and VAR slightly in that we have a light turn red on the big screen that a referee checks before restarting play. If the video ref watching the live cameras believes the on field ref has missed a red card or try that needs to be reviewed, he signals that and it's reviewed.

    For general referrals upstairs, they need to remove the try or no try element. It puts subsconscious pressure on the video referee to find a reason to support the on-field referee's decision and in a lot of cases it just means the benefit of the doubt is with the referee, not the attacking team or the balance of probability, which is wrong. A classic example of this is the Knowles try. It's a clear try IMO, but if that goes up from Hicks as a no try, they would probably be reluctant to overrule him. Goes up as a try it would be given clearly, so why have the video referee at all?

    What should happen is the ref sends it upstairs with a 'can we check offside and grounding' type request, no inference as to his view. The video referee then reviews it and if they can make a decision they do so based on the most likely outcome and the evidence they have. Only if they genuinely can't see what happened due to camera angles or bodies in the way do they send it back to the referee to decide. He can then base it on what he saw plus what was on the screen. That system wouldn't be perfect either, but it would ensure the highest percentage of decisions are correct.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Saddened! View Post
    They just need to refine the video ref piece. Firstly, borrow from football and VAR slightly in that we have a light turn red on the big screen that a referee checks before restarting play. If the video ref watching the live cameras believes the on field ref has missed a red card or try that needs to be reviewed, he signals that and it's reviewed.

    For general referrals upstairs, they need to remove the try or no try element. It puts subsconscious pressure on the video referee to find a reason to support the on-field referee's decision and in a lot of cases it just means the benefit of the doubt is with the referee, not the attacking team or the balance of probability, which is wrong. A classic example of this is the Knowles try. It's a clear try IMO, but if that goes up from Hicks as a no try, they would probably be reluctant to overrule him. Goes up as a try it would be given clearly, so why have the video referee at all?

    What should happen is the ref sends it upstairs with a 'can we check offside and grounding' type request, no inference as to his view. The video referee then reviews it and if they can make a decision they do so based on the most likely outcome and the evidence they have. Only if they genuinely can't see what happened due to camera angles or bodies in the way do they send it back to the referee to decide. He can then base it on what he saw plus what was on the screen. That system wouldn't be perfect either, but it would ensure the highest percentage of decisions are correct.
    One point I did make on the Knowles no try thread is that the primacy of the on field decision appears to be wrong. The video ref is a referee of equal standing with the on field referee and has more chance to examine what has happened in greater detail. In addition, I think it’s ridiculous that we appear to have a legal fiction to the effect that the on field ref can’t see what has happened on the screen.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Saddened! View Post
    They just need to refine the video ref piece. Firstly, borrow from football and VAR slightly in that we have a light turn red on the big screen that a referee checks before restarting play. If the video ref watching the live cameras believes the on field ref has missed a red card or try that needs to be reviewed, he signals that and it's reviewed.

    For general referrals upstairs, they need to remove the try or no try element. It puts subsconscious pressure on the video referee to find a reason to support the on-field referee's decision and in a lot of cases it just means the benefit of the doubt is with the referee, not the attacking team or the balance of probability, which is wrong. A classic example of this is the Knowles try. It's a clear try IMO, but if that goes up from Hicks as a no try, they would probably be reluctant to overrule him. Goes up as a try it would be given clearly, so why have the video referee at all.
    When the Percival try was sent to the video ref the first thing the video ref said was RIGHT WE ARE LOOKING FOR A KNOCK ON.The o field refs try or no try should be dropped.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Saddened! View Post
    I saw that, but it seems very few did, so my reference to it was met with a full on pitch fork march on Twitter by a load of 60 year old women. One even said she knows where I live and is going to kill my dogs. (I'm worried by that more because I don't have dogs, someone's innocent dog may be getting lynched)

    Hicks is a referee who you cannot doubt the integrity of, but he just had an awful day on Saturday. He had a mantra to have a fast, open and free flowing game. That's where the mistake came from with the Knowles try. He'd refer that to be sure 99 times out of 100, but he didn't then because he was trying to be decisive and keep the game going. I think he realises this himself watching the replay and like Saints his reaction to the adversity just wasn't at the level it needed to be. His ignoring the markers needing to be square and offsides bordered on the farcical and I'm sure he knows it. (Both sides here, not just Warrington).

    Hicks will be devestated by what happened at the weekend I'm sure. He was rightly given the biggest game of the season to reward his season, but like Saints absolutely blew it. Saints need to be very assertive with the RFL that he's not put under any further pressure now by refereeing any of our play off games or the Grand Final if we stumble upon some miracle and make it there. He won't be allowed to admit he made an error by the RFL and we've all seen the other referees and former players etc circling the wagons around him claiming he was perfect at the weekend in every regard, but he'll be gutted.

    What would genuinely help though is if the players were a big more professional and disciplined. Our ruck is an absolute disgrace, most clubs in SL make as many metres after they are tackled than they do before it with the amount of moving off the mark. The play the ball itself is horrendous, just throw wildly through the legs and the markers are never square. If you watch a decent game in the NRL it's like watching a completely different sport in that regard. They don't move off the mark as much, they don't rush the play the ball and they aren't constantly not square at the ruck. Whether the two referees system helps with that I don't know, but it's a possibility.
    Spot on, excellent post. Lots of sensible points made.

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    Rehnn on another post has given the best summary mentioning sub-consciousness but only partly gets to the problem. Once the story broke about the death threat - promoted by Hicks in cup final week on his social media, directing people to his Granada Reports interview - he put himself in a potentially uncomfortable position. The final referee had an emotional investment with one of the finalists just 5 days before the game. This shouldn't be allowed to happen in a professionally run sport. Perception is everything. The RFL should have seen the implications of doing it.

    Hicks game plan on Saturday appeared to be to let the game flow at all costs. As an RL fan he wanted an entertaining game. The clear favourites scoring in the 3rd minute wouldn't help this and his sub-conscious decision reflected it. Hicks is not a cheat and I'd wager his full conscious was telling him even before the 20 metre restart that the decision should be checked. His ego though wouldn't allow him to backtrack and that was his downfall. The Percival try is 50/50 and the VR would back the on-field referee in this situation. Hicks had a knife edge, split second call to make and his sub-conscious went with the underdog and the try was lost.

    With the underdogs leading 12-0, Hicks has now got his perfect recipe for a classic to unfold. Its an ideal situation for him. His sub-conscious is telling him he’s now got a contest and to let the players decide the outcome. His game management thinking will now adjust. From this point onward, Warrington never received another penalty.

    Unfortunately, at the kick off after Warrington’s 2nd try, whether through his mental adjustment, concentration or heat, he allows Warrington a 7 tackle set to advance up the field, resulting in Saints fielding a kick in their own 10. This would be a serious mental lapse in an ordinary SL match but in a final is difficult to understand. Why couldn’t his touch judges help him out here?

    Hicks is a good referee and not biased but factors around his sub-conscious and mental preparation failed him badly on Saturday.

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    It's nice to come on redvee for once and read some well composed, thought out points with some intelligence and impartiality. Suttoner and Saddened make great points. The try or no try needs to go. I agreed that however impartial hicks wanted to be, he would have had subconscious thoughts eminating from the recent incident with the wire fan online. In the physical and metaphorical heat of battle, pumped up in the opening stages of the biggest game of the season, he messed up and he knows it. We all make mistakes under pressure. It's about having a system that removes this potential for error and a try no try initial decision exacerbates a mistake as it's often a guess under pressure. Union does it better. Put down the hatchet and get to Twickers for a chat. Not the end of the world losing a final. Onwards and upwards!

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    Quote Originally Posted by MLM View Post
    Rehnn on another post has given the best summary mentioning sub-consciousness but only partly gets to the problem. Once the story broke about the death threat - promoted by Hicks in cup final week on his social media, directing people to his Granada Reports interview - he put himself in a potentially uncomfortable position. The final referee had an emotional investment with one of the finalists just 5 days before the game. This shouldn't be allowed to happen in a professionally run sport. Perception is everything. The RFL should have seen the implications of doing it.

    Hicks game plan on Saturday appeared to be to let the game flow at all costs. As an RL fan he wanted an entertaining game. The clear favourites scoring in the 3rd minute wouldn't help this and his sub-conscious decision reflected it. Hicks is not a cheat and I'd wager his full conscious was telling him even before the 20 metre restart that the decision should be checked. His ego though wouldn't allow him to backtrack and that was his downfall. The Percival try is 50/50 and the VR would back the on-field referee in this situation. Hicks had a knife edge, split second call to make and his sub-conscious went with the underdog and the try was lost.

    With the underdogs leading 12-0, Hicks has now got his perfect recipe for a classic to unfold. Its an ideal situation for him. His sub-conscious is telling him he’s now got a contest and to let the players decide the outcome. His game management thinking will now adjust. From this point onward, Warrington never received another penalty.

    Unfortunately, at the kick off after Warrington’s 2nd try, whether through his mental adjustment, concentration or heat, he allows Warrington a 7 tackle set to advance up the field, resulting in Saints fielding a kick in their own 10. This would be a serious mental lapse in an ordinary SL match but in a final is difficult to understand. Why couldn’t his touch judges help him out here?

    Hicks is a good referee and not biased but factors around his sub-conscious and mental preparation failed him badly on Saturday.
    That’s one excellent post and really gets under the skin of why Hicks, although not biased, really favoured Warrington on Saturday. The subconscious is a powerful influence

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    Quote Originally Posted by MLM View Post
    Rehnn on another post has given the best summary mentioning sub-consciousness but only partly gets to the problem. Once the story broke about the death threat - promoted by Hicks in cup final week on his social media, directing people to his Granada Reports interview - he put himself in a potentially uncomfortable position. The final referee had an emotional investment with one of the finalists just 5 days before the game. This shouldn't be allowed to happen in a professionally run sport. Perception is everything. The RFL should have seen the implications of doing it.

    Hicks game plan on Saturday appeared to be to let the game flow at all costs. As an RL fan he wanted an entertaining game. The clear favourites scoring in the 3rd minute wouldn't help this and his sub-conscious decision reflected it. Hicks is not a cheat and I'd wager his full conscious was telling him even before the 20 metre restart that the decision should be checked. His ego though wouldn't allow him to backtrack and that was his downfall. The Percival try is 50/50 and the VR would back the on-field referee in this situation. Hicks had a knife edge, split second call to make and his sub-conscious went with the underdog and the try was lost.

    With the underdogs leading 12-0, Hicks has now got his perfect recipe for a classic to unfold. Its an ideal situation for him. His sub-conscious is telling him heÂ’s now got a contest and to let the players decide the outcome. His game management thinking will now adjust. From this point onward, Warrington never received another penalty.

    Unfortunately, at the kick off after WarringtonÂ’s 2nd try, whether through his mental adjustment, concentration or heat, he allows Warrington a 7 tackle set to advance up the field, resulting in Saints fielding a kick in their own 10. This would be a serious mental lapse in an ordinary SL match but in a final is difficult to understand. Why couldnÂ’t his touch judges help him out here?

    Hicks is a good referee and not biased but factors around his sub-conscious and mental preparation failed him badly on Saturday.
    Excellent post sir, really well thought out and put together and a very interesting analogy of what went on.

    I also agree the RFL/Ganson set themselves up for a fall by appointing Hicks once the death threat and subsequent buttering up by Warrington came to light. You can't have the ref in a showpiece final with those sort of recent events connecting him to one of the finalists. It's another reason why RL just cannot be taken seriously. A well run, competently managed sport just wouldn't allow this to happen.

    It's no surprise then that nothing is said about Hicks's performance as the refs are untouchable and completely unaccountable. James Child must be having cold sweats in his sleep this week as he was thrown under the bus for doing, IMHO, a decent job in trying to ref a game where neither team wanted to be reffed but wanted to undermine him and just out-grub each other. Hicks has made a howler in the biggest showpiece RL event of the year on terrestrial TV and generally had a poor game, and arguably influenced the result. Then this week he gets the big relegation 4 pointer, London v Leeds. So basically, the clowns in charge have told him "carry on Rob you're doing a fine job mate". Surely someone else could have been given that game and Hicks one of the lesser ones.

    Ah, but this is Rugby League, where logic and common sense doesn't apply I'm afraid.
    "Never write off the Saints!!"

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    Quote Originally Posted by Saddened! View Post
    What should happen is the ref sends it upstairs with a 'can we check offside and grounding' type request, no inference as to his view.
    Why not adopt the same stance as yawion? The ref normally just asks if there is any reason why he can’t award the try, which is basically giving any slight advantage to the attacking team, puts no pressure on the video ref and probably more importantly the video ref can look at everything that happened since the last play the ball. As the current instruction seems to be that the VR will only look at what he’s told to, there will always be things that the on field ref hasn’t spotted

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    Quote Originally Posted by MachineGunFunk View Post
    Excellent post sir, really well thought out and put together and a very interesting analogy of what went on.

    I also agree the RFL/Ganson set themselves up for a fall by appointing Hicks once the death threat and subsequent buttering up by Warrington came to light. You can't have the ref in a showpiece final with those sort of recent events connecting him to one of the finalists. It's another reason why RL just cannot be taken seriously. A well run, competently managed sport just wouldn't allow this to happen.

    It's no surprise then that nothing is said about Hicks's performance as the refs are untouchable and completely unaccountable. James Child must be having cold sweats in his sleep this week as he was thrown under the bus for doing, IMHO, a decent job in trying to ref a game where neither team wanted to be reffed but wanted to undermine him and just out-grub each other. Hicks has made a howler in the biggest showpiece RL event of the year on terrestrial TV and generally had a poor game, and arguably influenced the result. Then this week he gets the big relegation 4 pointer, London v Leeds. So basically, the clowns in charge have told him "carry on Rob you're doing a fine job mate". Surely someone else could have been given that game and Hicks one of the lesser ones.

    Ah, but this is Rugby League, where logic and common sense doesn't apply I'm afraid.
    The seemingly differential treatment between Child and Hicks is absolutely scandalous actually. As you say I think Child did everything right. It would appear Hicks is undroppable based on his performance last week including an absolutely horrendous mistake and his appointment this week in quite an important game.

  22. #22
    In The West Stand Belgian Saint's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sean Day View Post
    The seemingly differential treatment between Child and Hicks is absolutely scandalous actually. As you say I think Child did everything right. It would appear Hicks is undroppable based on his performance last week including an absolutely horrendous mistake and his appointment this week in quite an important game.
    I felt the same. I believe Hicks is impartial, but some of his decisions were incompetent. Child's got made an example of, and Hicks sails merrily along. It would be interesting to see the correspondence between Saints, the RL and the Refs,

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    Some top notch posts on this thread. Thought-provoking stuff.

    The treatment Child got compared to Hicks is interesting. Plus Price criticising him after the Cats game, in which the players disgraced themselves.

    Suddenly, Hicks after the incident on social media is meeting up with Warrington & then gets the final. That Warrington are playing in. Then makes several howlers that put Saints in the cart.

    Better team won Saturday imo but this really does raise some serious questions about the integrity of the game.

    But nothing will come of it
    Dave Woods: the guy who makes Eddie Hemmings look like a decent commentator

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    Quote Originally Posted by Belgian Saint View Post
    I felt the same. I believe Hicks is impartial, but some of his decisions were incompetent. Child's got made an example of, and Hicks sails merrily along. It would be interesting to see the correspondence between Saints, the RL and the Refs,
    Forgive me for the Upside questioning approach, but you’ve clearly played Rugby Union to a high standard. Do you drop players to punish them after a poor performance or only because someone else can do the job, in a particular game, better? Couldn’t it destroy Hicks’ confidence if he is dropped after what were, admittedly, bad mistakes? Isn’t it better to let him prove to himself and others that he can referee another big game competently?

    I’m playing devils advocate but I can think of examples from my old workplace where individuals were not told about their mistakes to save them from losing confidence and undermining their decision making.

    It is, however, difficult, applying the same logic, to understand why Childs has been treated as he has. From my perspective a number of players needed to be punished not for mistakes but for ill discipline and the disciplinary let that go because the Challenge Cup was looming.

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    Quote Originally Posted by eddiewaringsflatcap View Post
    Total non-starter. Hicks wasn’t bias, just performed poorly on the day. It would undermine every official in what is a tough job. More apt would be what can the game do to get two refs on the pitch like the NRL.
    Totally disagree , Hicks was biased . If Wire had scored that Knowles effort he would have given it no doubt . He only started giving us anything when they were 12-0 up

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