Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Boro Are Denied as Ref Gets It Wrong

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Boro Are Denied as Ref Gets It Wrong

Article excerpt

Byline: ANDREW WILKINSON

OF the two weekend games that involved Teesside teams, neither went the distance.

Middlesbrough were denied in bizarre circumstances when the referee got his timekeeping wrong and ended their game at Beverley several minutes early with Boro just one point behind at 14-13.

Middlesbrough official Mike Read explained: "It was a miscalculation. He carried two watches, one to record injury time, and appeared to look at the wrong one.

"The touch judges ran to him to point it out, and so did players from both teams."

The referee initially decided to restart the game, and said there would be between six and eight minutes more played. But then he decided that as he had blown the final whistle he couldn't go back on the decision.

But as the delay had been short and the players had not become cold, the feeling was that the game should have continued.

Boro appeared after the game to have accepted the decision, so look unlikely to take it further, though the authorities may seek an official explanation from the referee, who was upset at his mistake.

The unlikely decision ended a bad day for Boro, who were pressing hard and looked likely to go on to win despite a catalogue of injuries.

Ian Bradford had to pull out shortly before the game, then Boro lost three players to injury - two in the first 15 minutes.

Lee Theakston lasted just 10 minutes because of a neck injury. Then Richard Barker, who twisted his ankle in the warm-up, soldiered on for 15 minutes before limping off.

And at the start of the second half, Martin Featherstone had to go off with a leg injury.

Boro led 13-7 at half time with a try from Callum Campbell, converted by Simon O'Farrell, and two O'Farrell penalties.

The home side hit back to take the lead, but Boro had Beverley pegged back close to their own line when the whistle went camped in their own 22. …

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