Over the weekend, much like every weekend, fans of a variety of clubs took to social media to bag the referees, the NRL, television stations and announce that there is a conspiracy against their club.
Don’t get me wrong, I am guilty of bagging referees, the NRL and Channel 9 on more than one occasion, but it’s downright ridiculous to suggest that the NRL would conspire against any club.
As is par with NRL games this season, there were a fair few mistakes from officials over the weekend. They were just that, mistakes.
Bulldogs fans were rightfully crying foul over decisions that went against them, whereas very similar decisions went with the Roosters, just 24 hours later.
Unfortunately human error will always play a role in decision making, as will a difference in opinion. What may be a try to someone may not be a try to the person sitting right next to them.
The only way we will ever get true consistency is if one referee is in charge on every game, every week, and every game is played in the same exact circumstances. No chance.
Last night during the Tigers/Storm clash, Tigers fans were calling for Cam Smith and Billy Slater to be punished after roughing up Keith Galloway. At the very same time, Storm players were calling for Galloway to be marched, stating that he was the instigator.
It was almost as though they were watching two completely different games.
I am yet to see a single 50/50 decision be unanimously agreed upon, even by neutral fans.
Hilariously, last year Jonathan Thurston claimed an NRL conspiracy against his side, when the Sharks scored a try on the seventh tackle. Thurston claimed that the NRL wanted an all Sydney Grand Final.
That would have been fine, had their opponents not been a team under intense scrutiny from Asada, with a chance the NRL would have to take the premiership win off them, should events have unfolded that would see the Sharks found guilty.
Worse still, fans of the Cowboys bought it, and ran with it.
I fully understand the frustration when it seems as though the referees are penalising one side more than the other, but sit next to a friend who supports the opposition, and all the money in the world says there is at least one time you disagree.
Not for a second can I say I am immune. During my team’s game this weekend I was quick to compose a tweet after what I saw as a wrong decision. My wife, a natural, laughed at me, saying to open my other eye.
I would hazard a guess that the odd passionate, committed fan of a club would overlook what is a fair decision based on passion for his or her team on the odd occasion.
Yes, decisions may go against your team, commentators may seem to speak more positively towards some, inconsistencies may mean your team does not get what you consider a ‘fair go’ but put away the tin foil hats, there is no conspiracy against you or your side.