AAP Rugby

Knights rise above penalty try call

By AAP Newswire

Newcastle coach Nathan Brown says his side was disappointed to be on the wrong end of the bunker's controversial penalty try call in Friday's 14-8 win over Cronulla.

But what's most important is the way his side reacted.

The Knights were in control at 8-2 with less than 10 minutes remaining at McDonald Jones Stadium before a grandstand finish was set up after Sharks winger Katoa was awarded a questionable penalty try.

Video referee official Ashley Klein ruled that Katoa was taken out by opposite winger Edrick Lee and would have run the race to the ball.

His teammate Josh Dugan did get to the ball just before the dead in-goal line however failed to ground it cleanly.

The bunker decided that because Katoa was ahead of Dugan in the chase, he would have scored had it not been for Lee's obstruction.

While Brown couldn't bring himself to agree with the decision, he instead highlighted the character shown by his side to come back - with Edrick Lee sealing the game with an 85m intercept try three minutes later.

Brown was philosophical, pointing out Shaun Kenny-Dowall was in the first-half on the wrong end of a 50-50 call when he was ruled to have dropped the ball on the line.

While Sharks centre Josh Dugan was denied a try when it was ruled that Katoa had illegally juggled the ball over an opposition player's head.

"It was probably a touch stiff, but you get some and you don't," Brown said.

"As a coach you learn over time you can't be second guessing and worrying about the ones you do and don't get.

"We were a bit stiff on the Skiddsy one and they got the Katoa one, which in the laws of the gamer is the right decision.

"You're not allowed to do that. But if you compete hard and you play tough footy, you give yourself a hope."

Sharks coach John Morris said there was no doubt in his mind that Lee was taken out and that he would have been in a position to score.

"I think Edrick made a decent enough play to obstruct Sione from going for the ball," Morris said.

"There's obviously a bit of doubt in those ones, as to whether Sione is going to get the ball down but I think Edrick obstructed him enough to warrant a penalty try.

"We may have got one back there but I think it was a fair call."