Two Magpies rubbed out of HMC Grand Final
Two Magpies rubbed out of HMC Grand Final
Two Wests Magpies to miss grand final over melee
Only one of three Magpies players sent off after a melee with the Raiders will line-up in the Harold Matthews grand final after earning a reprieve at the judiciary.
Three Wests Magpies Harold Matts (under-17s) players are facing bans from next weekend’s grand final after a brawl against Canberra.
Only one of the three Western Suburbs Magpies players sent off last weekend earned a reprieve at the judiciary on Wednesday night and is free to play in Saturday’s Harold Matthews grand final.
Backrower Jeremiah Leatigaga will line-up against the Cronulla Sharks at CommBank Stadium after the Magpies successfully argued for a downgrade at the judiciary.
The match review committee initially cited Leatigaga with a grade two contrary conduct charge which was downgraded after the judiciary panel agreed the forward had mistakenly come onto the field to celebrate the Magpies’ 20-16 win against Canberra, believing the game was over.
It looks as though the Magpies will be down three players for this weekend’s decider.
Leatigaga, Kohan Lewis and Thomas Peti were all sent off in the final seconds of last Saturday’s game when the trio ran onto the field from bench as a push-and-shove broke out between Magpies and Raiders players.
In footage of the incident, Leatigaga can be seen shaking hands with a Canberra player as other players scuffle in the background.
But the news wasn’t as positive for his teammate Lewis, who will miss the grand final after he failed in his bid to have the same charge also downgraded.
Wests Tigers head of pathways Matthew Betsey said the players came onto the field because they heard the fulltime siren.
“We thought we had a fair case to get both of them downgraded but it didn’t work out that way,” Betsey said.
It was a close game full of emotion
“It was a close game full of emotion, time had expired, the siren had gone … people were jumping up and down on the sideline.
They thought it was fulltime, so they entered the field.
“Kohan and Jeremiah genuinely went on the field to celebrate with their teammates.”
Peti will also miss the grand final after the Magpies opted not to fight his charge and took an early guilty plea.
Magpies and Raiders players were involved in a scuffle at full-time last weekend. Picture: Damian Shaw
While Leatigaga did not get involved in the scuffle, Peti was seen pushing a Raiders player, while Lewis was at the centre of the scuffle trying to separate teammates.
But tensions had threatened to boil over even before the all-in melee as Canberra players niggled at their opposition in the final minutes of the match.
Raiders captain Owen Hromow tackled Magpies fullback Luke Laulilii with a swinging arm but Laulilii, who took exception to the tackle, was dragged away by teammates before that encounter further escalated.
Two ‘non-players’ also ran onto the field from the sidelines and both have been issued with contrary conduct breach notices under the NRL’s code of conduct.
The players have accepted the proposed sanctions and have been handed two and three week bans, respectively.
GRAND FINAL ACTION PHOTO’S
Semi Final Action Photo’s
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SG Ball Cup
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