League: Toovey urges rethink on rule

Manly coach Geoff Toovey. Photo / Getty Images
Manly coach Geoff Toovey. Photo / Getty Images

Manly coach Geoff Toovey has urged authorities to review the obstruction ruling at the end of the NRL season after having two tries disallowed against North Queensland.

A frustrated Toovey was left scratching his head after video referee Phil Cooley ruled out an 11th minute try to Tony Williams and a Brett Stewart effort on 63 minutes.

In both cases Cooley found a Manly player had impeded a Cowboys defender and did not award the try.

Manly still ended up grinding out an 8-6 win in Townsville, but the Sea Eagles coach wanted some clarification on the ruling.

"It'd be interesting to see what they say about the obstruction rule now, but anyway, who knows. It's a hit and miss thing," Toovey said.

"You don't know whether you tell your players to fall over or whatever, I don't know any more.

"As I said it's something we need to deal with. I think the coaches and officials need to deal with it properly at the end of the year."

The first try in particular rankled the Manly mentor, who believed Glenn Hall had gone down a little easy when Anthony Watmough touched him.

But Toovey felt it was an issue that couldn't be addressed before the finals.

"I've spoken to the refs and they've got a different opinion to me, well the boss [Bill Harrigan] has a different opinion to me, and I'm sure other coaches have got different opinions as well so we'll just wait until the end of the year and there'll be confusion along the way," he said.

Manly captain Jamie Lyon backed his coach, saying he hoped no matches were decided by the perceived inconsistent rulings.

"Some things look like tries and then they don't [award it] and there's a lot of different reasoning there so it's got to be sorted out," Lyon said.

But Cowboys mentor Neil Henry said it was already part of a constant review of the rules of the game, and said the ruling was pretty clear.

"I think if the inside-out defender gets impeded and his space gets taken away and he can't adjust to move out to defend, it's an obstruction," Henry said.

"I thought on both of those occasions, maybe the first one was a little bit more dubious but by the way they're adjudicating them I had no problem with both of them."

Henry said the ruling was not something that everyone would ever agree on anyway.

"If they happened to us I'd say one was 50-50 and one was 100 per cent obstruction. I had no problem with it."

- AAP

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