Narromine captain-coach Wes Middleton has called on all involved in Group 11 to show the officials more respect after an ugly incident of abuse marred Sunday’s match at Cale Oval.
Westside scored a gritty come-from-behind win over the Jets on Sunday but the major talking point was referee Mick Medlin calling the match off 40 seconds early after one of his touch judges had been verbally abused by a Narromine supporter.
Middleton condemned the behaviour and said it’s time for everyone involved in the game to be better.
“It’s not good for our club and it’s not good for the game,” Middleton, sidelined through injury, said.
“It’s disappointing and not everyone agrees with referees but they’re there to do a job and so are we.
FT | Ugly end to this one. Narromine fan directs some abuse towards a touch judge and referee Mick Medlin calls game 40 seconds early. Not a pretty game but massive result for Westside, they score a come-from-behind 28-18 victory over Narromine at Cale Oval. #Group11— Nick Guthrie (@Nj_Guthrie) June 17, 2018
“I think every club needs to give the referees a bit more respect because at the end of the day they allow us to play the game we love.”
The incident overshadowed an otherwise enthralling contest as the Rabbitohs fought back in the second stanza after the Jets were eyeing their maiden win for the season at half-time.
The Jets’ forward pack set the tone early while five-eighth Travis Lowe again showed class as the Jets shot out to a 12-0 lead and they went into the break up 18-10, young backrower DJ Kennedy bagging an early double.
But Westside grew into the game and showed more patience in the second stanza, even while Darrell Kemp was sin-binned, and former Jet Daryl Cubby was instrumental in the victory.
After a converted try to Kaylan Murray locked things all up it was a fantastic Cubby 40/20 kick under pressure which led to a try for Kurt Beahan while the flying fullback then sealed the result with a try on 70 minutes.
“Daryl Cubby is a freak of a talent,” Westside joint-captain-coach Claude Gordon said.
“He stood up when the game was in balance and we came up trumps because of a bloke named Daryl Cubby, as simple as that.”
While confessing it was an “ugly” win, Gordon couldn’t have been prouder of his side after they had to deal with handling errors and some ill-discipline which resulted in two players in the bin at different times during the match.
Corey Ashby changed the game when he came off the bench and the livewire bagged a double in his first appearance of the season after overcoming injury.
“It shows guts and determination. They didn’t score a point in the second half,” Gordon said of his side’s defensive effort.
“It shows ticker and that’s good. The boys didn’t throw the towel in and there was even times there where I thought to myself they might but they kept showing up.
“It was ugly but we got the job done and we’ve still got a lot to work on a training.”
Injuries didn’t help the hosts and with the inspirational skipper expected to be sidelined for an extra two weeks the Jets lost Jarryd Usher to a nasty head cut for a period of the game while halfback Tyrone Walsh’s departure midway through the second half with a leg complaint was another key moment.
But Middleton didn’t use that as an excuse at all and while he remains positive he was all too aware fundamental and avoidable errors such as knock-ons and incorrect play-the-balls cost his side dearly.
“We had the game … we just need to execute a lot better and simplify things,” Middleton said.
“We made basic errors and you can’t do that. It’s been creeping into our game.
“Little things have been letting us down but we’ve got a full second round to go … and the effort is there constantly from the boys and they are improving.”
The Jets face a massive challenge next week as they welcome unbeaten CYMS to Cale Oval while Westside will play host to an in-form Forbes Magpies outfit.