It’s the rule change that Cameron Smith says he has never heard of – and it cost Queensland dearly in State of Origin III.
The bunker awarded a crucial Andrew Fifita try in the 41st minute of NSW’s 18-14 win at ANZ Stadium on Wednesday night as the Blues prevented a Maroons series clean sweep.
Michael Jennings was offside in the lead up to the try but was ruled to have been “passive” and not have been involved in the play.
Blues coach Laurie Daley said the rule had been “relaxed” and according to the NRL it has been an interpretation since 2013.
But Melbourne, Queensland and Australian captain hadn’t got the memo.
“My understanding is if a person is inside the 10m (when a try is scored after being) in front of the kicker, that is offside,” Smith said.
“I’m pretty sure last year we had a try taken off us. Matt Gillett might have been offside.
“That wasn’t the refs … that was the bunker that made that call, I understand that.
“But I didn’t know we relaxed rules in our game.”
Maroons coach Kevin Walters agreed.
“I have to support Cameron, there, it was one of our things that didn’t go our way,” Walters said.
The NRL says the rule has been an interpretation since 2013, that a player is “passive” and a try like Fifita’s is permitted is the players don’t “influence the course of the game”.