Ricky Stuart has been slapped with a $10,000 fine by the NRL for throwing a water bottle out of the coaches box during the Canberra Raiders’ 26-14 victory over the New Zealand Warriors on Sunday 20 September.
Stuart was visibly frustrated during the first half as his side was on the wrong end of a 7-1 penalty count and was caught throwing the bottle out of the coaches’ box after Jack Wighton was sin-binned for being offside.
The NRL has opted to suspend the fine for 12 months provided Stuart avoids being involved in a further controversy.
The Raiders coach has also been issued with an official warning about sailing close to the edge in his post-game press conference.
Despite the Raiders overcoming an early 14-6 deficit to record a gritty win, Stuart was clearly stewing over the refereeing all game and came out swinging in his post-match press conference.
“I wasn’t happy with too much. It was a shocking game of football,” Stuart said.
“If we had’ve put some lineouts in when the ball went out, it would have been two rugby union games here in two days – disgraceful.
“If my team was giving those penalties away, then well and good. But they were doing the same types of things and not getting penalised for it. It’s not the first time and it really frustrates me.
“Jack Wighton’s sin bin – would that have been the same decision if it was a semifinal? I hope not because he wasn’t offside. You can’t make that error.”
Stuart then turned his attention to NRL head of football Graham Annesley and the way he views the game of rugby league.
“Graham Annesley is a really nice man, he has been in the game for a long time. But in regards to rugby league, Graham Annesley and myself are planets apart. Thank God COVID is in, because we wouldn’t get any more than 6,000 to these games.
“No, I won’t be raising any points [with him]. I will be doing my review and they will do their review, go into hiding with their results and it will be game on again next week.
“I’ve been around the game long enough to know and see where we create a foul and we get penalised – I understand that. But when you see the opposition doing the exact same thing, I expect the penalty to be there too.
“It was just a frustrating day.”
Stuart and Annesley reportedly had not spoken since the Raiders controversial grand final loss last season which featured the infamous Ben Cummins “six again” incident and the Sydney Roosters trainer impacting play that both resulted in Roosters tries. The pair finally spoke on Monday to clear the air.
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