News

Footbrawl furore: Weekend league marred by violence

MARCHING ORDERS: Grafton interchange player Carlton Elliot (number 17) is given his marching orders after an all-in brawl in the Ghosts’ Group 2 match with the Nambucca Heads Roosters on Sunday afternoon at Frank McGuren Field.
MARCHING ORDERS: Grafton interchange player Carlton Elliot (number 17) is given his marching orders after an all-in brawl in the Ghosts’ Group 2 match with the Nambucca Heads Roosters on Sunday afternoon at Frank McGuren Field. Debrah Novak

NORTH Coast rugby league was reduced to brawls and biff across both NRRRL or Group 2 competitions at the weekend.

At Frank McGuren Field the Grafton Ghosts and Nambucca Heads Roosters game was punctuated by on-field fights, send-offs and fan brawls, while at Lismore the Lower Clarence Magpies' reserve grade side played a match in between brawls against Northern United.

The Grafton Ghosts' match against the Nambucca Heads Roosters was bookended by incidents with players and fans all involved in fighting at different stages.

In the 17th minute at Frank McGuren Field, Roosters halfback Edgar Cowell was sent from the field for striking a prone opponent. On his way off the field the playmaker became embroiled in a conflict with fans on the sidelines.

Fans of both sides faced off before security was called to break it up and move the crowd on.

Later in the match the sides became involved in an on-field brawl where a player from each side was sent to the sin bin for landing punches on their opponent. A bloody Kade Welsh did not return to the field for Nambucca after his 10 minutes in the bin were finished, due to a cut above his eye.

MAN DOWN: Mitchell Gorman down for the count during the Toohey’s New Group 2 Rugby League match between the Grafton Ghosts and the Nambucca Roosters at the Frank McGuren Park on Sunday.
MAN DOWN: Mitchell Gorman down for the count during the Toohey’s New Group 2 Rugby League match between the Grafton Ghosts and the Nambucca Roosters at the Frank McGuren Park on Sunday. Debrah Novak

 

Grafton Ghosts manager Joe Kinnane said he was disgusted by the actions of players on the field and asked if this is what the modern game had become.

"This is deadset going back to the way they played in the 1970s and it seems to be the same issue every week, not just this week," he said.

"No way in the world are you bloody happy with what was happening yesterday, it was downright thuggery.

"There was a lot of unsavoury incidents in the game. [The Roosters] weren't even trying to play football out there on the field.

"Lots of ex-players have remarked to me that it is going back 30 years the way they play in Group 2. I don't know who is to blame, whether it is the association, the referees or the damn players who think it is all right to play like that."

Ghosts veteran halfback Ryan Farrell said it did not feel like a football match on the field.

"It wasn't really a game of football it was a game of who can knock their opponents' blocks off," he said.

"I don't think anyone enjoys all the fighting on the field. I surely don't enjoy it."

But the Ghosts and Roosters game was not the only one to be marred with controversy at the weekend.

Witnesses reported, while not as heavy as the Group 2 match, the second half of the reserve-grade game between Lower Clarence Magpies and Northern United disintegrated into spurts of violence between footballing action, with multiple players sent to the sin bin.

Mikee Randall, coach of the Magpies' reserve-grade side, refused to comment on the on-field fighting when contacted.

But Magpies president and second grade player Steve Austine admitted to the fighting in the second half.

"We were leading 28-6 just after half-time when we had a player sinbinned for fighting when we were in possession," he said.

"There was penalty after penalty. It was mainly our fault for getting dragged into a grubby game."

Group 2 administrator Warren Gilkinson said no action could be taken against the teams involved in Sunday's brawl at Frank McGuren Field until an official report was filed.

"Fighting on the field is always unacceptable in football," he said. "The incident will remain under review pending an official report to be filed by either team."

Topics:  brawl country rugby league grafton ghosts group 2 lower clarence magpies nambucca heads roosters northern rivers regional rugby league northern united dirawongs nrrrl rugby league violence



Former Magpies sons return to lead into next generation

NEXT GENERATION: Lower Clarence Magpies new coaches Anthony Hickling and Dan Randall with club president Darrin Heron (centre).

Lower premiership winner Dan Randall returns to lead 2017 charge.

Commercial fishers get extension, but it makes no difference

Ballina trawler harbour.

Deadline extended for NSW fishers buying back into the industry

Sex attacker slapped with strict supervision upon release

Violent sex offender's life after jail no walk in the park

Local Partners

Christmas has arrived in Grafton

Christmas has come to Shoppingworld as Santa arrived this morning to have his photos taken with children.


Bringing their Magic Mojo to Grafton

MAGIC: Head down to Roches Family Hotel for a brilliant mix of '70s, '80s and '90s music by Magic Mojo, a Coffs Coast band using their experience to give a brilliant performance.

Powerful trio to lift the top off Roches Hotel tonight

Catch Saturday night fever at the South Club

GEEZ WIZZ: Get your dancing shoes on for the UK Bee Geez Show.

The UK Bee Geez Show delivers a realistic tribute to pop legends

Audience in for a rare treat from husband and wife duo

Husband and wife Adam Eckersley and Brooke McClymont are playing at home this weekend for an intimate gig at the Pelican Playhouse.

"We love playing these up close and personal acoustic shows”

David Attenborough on facing his mortality

Sir David Attenborough in a scene from the TV special The Death of the Oceans.

Life without Sir David Attenborough is hard to imagine

Goooodbye Hamish and Andy (from our radios)

Hamish and Andy

The pair have been on air since 2006

Saying "I do" changed Shia's outlook on marriage

Shia LaBeouf has a new outlook on marriage since he tied the knot.

Singer tunes in to first movie role

Tori Kelly voices the character Meena in the movie Sing.

Musician Tori Kelly voices Meena the teenage elephant in Sing

Cricketing greats bring Aussie mateship to commentary box

Cricket commentator Adam Gilchrist.

ADAM Gilchrist enjoys the fun of calling the Big Bash League.

The dead help solve the case

Debut novel delivers on wit, violence and shock

Chinese locked out of Australian property market

The rules are different if you're a foreigner

The buyer was from China - the trouble started right there

Morrison signs off on new affordable rental model

Australia's Treasurer Scott Morrison speaks during a press conference after a meeting of the Council of Federal Financial Relations at Parliament House in Canberra, Friday, Dec. 2, 2016.

Scott Morrison signed off on development of a new financing model

Coast high-flyer's fight back from bankruptcy, $72m debt

Scott Juniper went from millionaire developer to declaring bankruptcy in2012, now he is back on top of his game again with new developments including this one in Coolum.

'Apocalyptic lending storm' causes financial collapse.

How your home can earn you big $$$$ this Christmas

This luxury Twin Waters home rents out over Christmas for more than $6000 a week.

Home owners earning thousands renting out their homes this Christmas

2000 jobs at multi-million dollar Ipswich project

INSIDE: Artist's impressions of the interior of the new Eastern Heights aged care precinct.

Sub-contractors needed to build $15m aged care facility

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!