Greg Inglis has been suspended for three NRL matches after pleading guilty to a grade-two shoulder charge which left Josh Dugan with a broken jaw.
The South Sydney captain was slapped with the charge for the second-half hit which flattened the NSW centre in Queensland’s 18-14 Origin III loss to the Blues at ANZ Stadium on Wednesday night.
The incident, which will leave Dugan sidelined for up to six weeks after he undergoes surgery to have a plate inserted into his jaw on Friday, sparked instant debate after Blues legend Andrew Johns labelled even the on-field call of a penalty “soft”.
“That is the softest of soft penalties in a club game, let alone an Origin,” Johns said on Nine Network commentary.
“For me there Inglis is bracing himself, that’s all he’s done – he can’t disappear.”
The hit on Dugan, which came after he kicked the ball, was originally missed by the on-field referees before the video bunker intervened.
Former NRL referees boss Bill Harrigan insisted Inglis only had himself to blame after he ran into Dugan’s path and then tucked his arm in.
“They say you use your shoulder without any arms, then you’re in trouble,” Harrigan told Triple M.
“That’s the way they’ve done it these days.
“What he needed to do is put some arm in it.”
Meanwhile retiring Queensland lock Corey Parker is facing a one-match ban regardless of his plea for dangerous contact with the head or neck after putting a forearm into NSW debutant James Tedesco as he lay in a tackle.
And Blues forward Andrew Fifita is also facing a one-game ban on a contrary conduct charge after he took exception to try-scorer Gavin Cooper throwing the ball into tackler Matt Moylan’s head and ran in to grab him by the head, earning a sin-binning.