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Wests Tigers controversial loss, Bunker decision, Graham Annesley, Cameron Smith, scrap the Bunker, scrap the captain’s challenge, news, highlights

Rugby league legend Cameron Smith has called for the NRL to scrap the captain’s challenge rule after the confusing fiasco between the Cowboys and the Tigers.

The new rule came under the spotlight this week after the Tigers were stripped of victory, with NRL head of football Graham Annesley admitting bunker referee Ashley Clyne made a mistake.

Now, Smith believes the captain’s challenge has introduced new confusion for umpires, a way for players to cheat, as Chad Townsend did in Round 19.

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“Get rid of it,” Smith said on SEN 1170.

“I’ve said it before. Cut it out. Just remove it.

“The players are now in (and) when the referee realizes the call is wrong or the call is missed, they come running 20 meters away and lay in the tackle.

“Coaches and players have found a way to change it and they’re not breaking the rules.

“The NRL play by the rules they’ve given them, but now it’s changed our game.

“It’s a bit of a gimmick.

“Please remove it.”

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While the NRL admitted the escort penalty to the Cowboys was a mistake, Annesley controversially said Townsend’s use of the captain’s test was legal.

Annesley said the referee used a short whistle, which meant North Queensland were able to create a challenge – and could stand at any point in the game.

“(Annesley) said you can compete at any stop in the game,” Denan Kemp said.

“I’m not sure if it was before.

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“There was another time when people came out to compete and said you can’t challenge a ref for any reason.

“I thought you had to resist a certain calling.

“We try to make things simpler but it’s made it more complicated.

“I wonder what the captain test system is now.”

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