Palfrey biting claim under scrutiny

Date published: Thursday, September 25, 2014
RUGBY League disciplinary chiefs are continuing to investigate Lewis Palfrey’s allegation that he was bitten in Oldham’s play-off win at York.
The RFL has asked for, and been supplied with, what Oldham say is photographic evidence of a bite mark.
And Roughyeds have also assured RFL chiefs that Palfrey will be prepared to make a statement if the need arises.
The allegation by Palfrey against York captain Jack Lee, a strong contender for Championship One player of the year, was placed on report by referee George Stokes.
According to the York Evening Press, Lee strenuously denied any malpractice, saying: “I was using a gum shield, and that made it impossible to bite. They can say what they want. I did not bite.
“I don’t know if this is a tactic to stop me playing in the next round.”
The Press also reported that York had made a counter accusation —- that Oldham had merely wanted to unsettle their captain and top try scorer, if not get him suspended for the rest of the play-offs.
Coach Gary Thornton was reported to have said: “Jack is annoyed that he’s been put in the frame for something like this.
“I spoke to the RFL about it first, rather than wait for them to come to us.
“There’s nothing on the DVD to suggest biting. Jack plays tough, but fair. He’s not a dirty player. He’s not into anything like that and he was upset and angry about the allegations.”
If York beat Hunslet at Huntington Stadium on Sunday in he major semi-final, they will go head to head with Oldham again in the Grand Final at Headingley Carnegie on Sunday, October 5.
York and their fans were less than happy with what the local paper described as referee Stokes’s “controversial” handling of the Oldham game.
They felt two of Oldham’s five tries should have been disallowed for offside and they couldn’t understand why a Lee effort close to the line was ruled out when it was deemed good by the in-goal judge.
It was also claimed that Stokes’s marshalling of the ten-metre offside rule and arguable lying-on wasn’t good either.
Stokes is back on duty at the Huntington Stadium on Sunday for York v Hunslet and that’s something else that York fans are fretting about.
* Oldham chairman Chris Hamilton will be a studio guest on Radio Manchester from about 7pm this evening during Jack Dearden’s Rugby League show.
* Neil Roden’s testimonial committee invite fans to play poker at the Body Image Gym, Hindley Green, Wigan on Sunday (2pm start). It’s £15 to buy-in with unlimited re-buy during the first hour. £5 from each entry goes to the testimonial fund.