Canterbury coach Dean Pay has expressed his disappointment at revelations a last-minute conversion attempt by Rhyse Martin to send Sunday’s match against Melbourne into extra time should have been taken three metres closer to the goal posts.
Martin missed the shot at goal from the sideline after winger Reimis Smith had scored to give the Bulldogs a chance to snatch a golden-point win but it was discovered on Monday he took the conversion attempt from the wrong place.
NRL head of football Graham Annesley spoke to Pay after the error was detected in a review of the round by match officials and he said referee Ben Cummins and assistant referee Tim Roby "clearly weren’t paying enough attention".
Martin, who has now kicked 41 goals from 45 attempts in his 16 NRL appearances, took the conversion attempt directly in line with where Cummins had walked after the Refs' Bunker awarded Smith’s try.
Roby had stood on the mark about three metres in from the sideline while Cummins was in the in-goal area talking to match review officials.
After the try was awarded to reduce the Storm’s lead to 18-16, Cummins and Roby began walking towards each other and they moved to the sideline.
"In our view the referees should not have allowed that to happen - particularly in the circumstances of the game - and that kick should have been taken another three or four metres in from touch," Annesley said.
"That doesn’t mean he would have got the goal but the referees have got a responsibility to ensure the kick is taken from the mark in line with where the try was scored."
Annesley said Pay wanted to know how the error had occurred.
"I have spoken to the Bulldogs about it but they didn’t bring it to our attention," Annesley said. "In fact, we were at our review this morning looking at it when I got the phone call.
"[Pay] was OK but he queried why it was taken in the wrong spot. He wasn’t blowing up about it.
"The goal misses by a fair margin and it is impossible to know if the extra three or four metres would have made any difference to that but this is something we should not be getting wrong."