Canberra coach Ricky Stuart blew up over a missed foward pass last weekend Digital image by Gregg Porteous � NRL Photos
Canberra coach Ricky Stuart blew up over a missed foward pass last weekend Digital image by Gregg Porteous � NRL Photos

‘It was a forward pass’ NRL own up on blunder

The NRL hopes to trial forward pass technology this season as the league admits the New Zealand Warriors benefited from a forward pass to beat Canberra on the weekend.

Raiders coach Ricky Stuart was left fuming after the Warriors were awarded a try to prop Ben Murdoch-Masila from a clear forward pass that forced the big man to reach to catch the ball.

The New Zealanders went on to win 34-31 after trailing 25-6 at halftime.

In his weekly briefing, Head of Football Graham Annesley conceded Kodi Nikorima's pass to Murdoch-Masila was forward.

Annesley declared forward passes aren't ideal, but league officials are determined to eradicate as many mistakes as possible.

He confirmed the NRL will trial forward pass technology in a training session at some stage this year before hopefully taking the proposal to the commission for approval.

"The technology won't happen this season, but we are making good progress in terms of a potential development that would help solve this problem," Annesley said.

"We have been talking to a company for quite some time and I'm hopeful that we are not that far off a trial and test of the technology.

 

"My intention is to get a trial up this year. It won't be in an NRL game, but it could potentially be in a training session where we put the technology in place.

"If we can convince that the technology is accurate, then we can present it as a business case to the commission to justify the expenditure.

"But it isn't something that would be introduced mid-season because it isn't at that point of development just yet."

Annesley said forward passes have sparked intense conversation since the game's inception in 1908, but the NRL want to make the game as mistake-free as possible.

"It is a problem that has been around the game for as long as it has been covered on television," he said.

"And of course, forward passes even prior to television, so unless we can come up with technology that can take away that controversy and doubt about passes, then we are going to continue to have that debate about passes then we are going to continue to have that debate."

Originally published as 'It was a forward pass' NRL own up on blunder


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