Canterbury's Moses Mbye catches a high kick on Thursday night against the Broncos, before being sin-binned in the dying moments of the match. Picture: Dan Peled/AAP
Canterbury's Moses Mbye catches a high kick on Thursday night against the Broncos, before being sin-binned in the dying moments of the match. Picture: Dan Peled/AAP DAN PELED

Livid Bulldog coach's spray rejected by boss of NRL referees

NRL referees' boss Bernie Sutton has defended his whistleblowers following Canterbury coach Dean Pay's post-match spray, declaring they were right to sin-bin Moses Mbye.

Pay is facing the prospect of a $10,000 fine after hitting out at match official Gerard Sutton and video referee Steve Chiddy.

The Canterbury coach was livid following the decision to march Mbye for a professional foul against Darius Boyd in the dying moments of the Bulldogs' 22-20 loss to Brisbane on Thursday night.

The ensuing penalty gifted Jamayne Isaako the chance to boot the match-winning goal, condemning the Bulldogs to their third straight defeat.

Despite Mbye making clear contact with Boyd as he ran through to contest a loose kick, Pay branded the decision "ridiculous".

However, Sutton said his men got it spot-on.

"They've got the penalty right," Sutton told AAP.

"You can see Moses Mbye comes across field, deliberately puts two hands on Darius Boyd. It's pretty important to note here Darius Boyd has never had the ball, he's trying to contest the ball in what is a try-scoring situation.

"There's no reason for Moses to grab hold of him and push him."

Sutton also said the referees were correct not to award a knock-on against Isaako in the 31st minute when he appeared to propel the ball forward as he fielded a bomb.

"I'm very comfortable with the play-on call there," Sutton said.

"Having had the opportunity to review it - you see when Jamayne touches the ball he's at least a metre to a metre and a half in front of the 10m line. The ball practically lands on the 10m line."

Additionally, he said the whistleblowers got it right when David Klemmer was marched 10m for back-chat, which allowed the Broncos to level the scores at 14-14 in the 52nd minute.

Pay took exception to the incident, believing Klemmer was penalised because the referees did not know the NSW prop was the acting captain.

Sutton revealed Klemmer was penalised for swearing at officials and he would have been pinged regardless of whether he was captain.

Pay's post-match comments would be reviewed by the governing body on Monday, an NRL spokesman said.

Pay hinted at a conspiracy theory after the 79th-minute decision to sin-bin Mbye.

"It's like we are not supposed to win," a livid Pay said.

He added: "I got a group of blokes who busted their a--- and to be decided like that."

A $10,000 fine is slapped on coaches for "minor discretions", but there is scope for more significant breaches as indicated by penalties to Cronulla coach Shane Flanagan ($30,000) and Manly mentor Trent Barrett ($20,000) in last year's finals.

- AAP


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