'Terrible': NRL fans fume over 'stunning' double Bunker drama

Riley Morgan
·Sports Reporter
·2-min read
The Melbourne Storm were awarded a penalty try (pictured left) after a Penrith player used his foot and and Penrith denied for obstruction (pictured right.
The Melbourne Storm were awarded a penalty try (pictured left) and Penrith were denied for obstruction (pictured right) after two dramatic Bunker calls. (Images: Channel 9)

Penrith fans couldn’t believe their misfortune in the opening 10 minutes of the NRL grand final after the Storm were awarded a penalty try, before the Panthers were denied by the Bunker.

Controversy erupted in just the fourth minute when Justin Olam dived towards the Penrith line to finish off a sweeping Storm move.

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But the referee deemed Olam had lost the ball in the tackle over the line.

However, replays showed the Penrith defender Tyrone May used his outstretched leg to knock the ball loose.

“Tyrone May has used the foot to kick the ball out of the possession of Justin Olam,” Bunker offical Steve Chiddy said.

“In our opinion, we believe a try would have been scored.”

The Bunker awarded a penalty try for the first time in a grand final since 2003.

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“That’s incredible. I don’t know what Tyrone May could have done any differently there,” Gould said in Channel 9 commentary.

“It is not what I would call indiscriminate kicking but the referee ruled he’s played at the ball with his foot.

“It is illegal to play at the ball with your foot. That is a stunning start to this game. Stunning.”

But only three minutes later, Penrith were denied a try in a tight obstruction call when Josh Mansour crossed.

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Fans were torn on social media to whether the penalty try was the right call and were frustrated with the obstruction with another on-field referee call overturned.