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Referee Cummins avoids NRL axe

Referee Ben Cummins has been retained for the final round of the NRL despite his major blunder in Brisbane's win over St George Illawarra on Friday.
Referee Cummins avoids NRL axe
by AAP

By James MacSmith

SYDNEY, Sept 2 AAP - Referee Ben Cummins has been retained for the final round of the NRL despite his major blunder in Brisbane's win over St George Illawarra on Friday.

Cummins' decision to erroneously sin bin Broncos forward Matt Gillett for being offside after a Brett Morris quick tap was described by Penrith supremo and Channel Nine Commentator Phil Gould as "the greatest clanger I have ever seen".

But the under-siege whistleblower will officiate in the Gold Coast-Canterbury match on Sunday.

NRL head of football Todd Greenberg said on Tuesday that Cummins, who was spotted at South Sydney training on Monday, did not deserve the sack on that mistake alone.

"We had a big error on the weekend. Ben Cummins made a big error, he knows it," Greenberg said at the announcement of the National Youth Competition team of the year.

"I think we have been pretty consistently clear this year that we have tried not to drop referees on one bad performance."

"We are determined to make sure the referees are the best they can be.

"I think (referees boss) Tony Archer has done an outstanding job this year, he has a very tough portfolio."

Despite retaining his first grade berth, the allocation to the Titans-Bulldogs clash is a demotion for Cummins, who refereed last year's grand final with Shayne Hayne.




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