Panthers boss Grix gives his reaction to raft of suspensions following win over York

Halifax Panthers boss Simon Grix has given his verdict on the raft of suspensions his side have been hit with following the 36-10 win over York on Monday.

By Tom Scargill
Friday, 15th July 2022, 3:22 pm

Matt Gee has been given two separate charges, both for a late on hit on a passer - the first is a one-match Grade 'B' dangerous contact and the second is a Grade 'D' dangerous contact, which usually carries a ban of around three to four matches.

Two other players, Ben Kavanagh and Ed Barber, have also been handed one-match bans for late hits on a passer, being given Grade 'B' dangerous contact charges.

All three Grade 'B' charges cite the players making contact "with an opponent after the ball has been released in a vulnerable position which causes flexion to the head, neck or spinal column which poses an unacceptable risk of injury."

Simon Grix. Photo: Simon Hall

Kevin Larroyer has been issued with a two-match ban for a Grade 'C' dangerous throw, having lifted a "player into a dangerous position."

Should Gee be banned for four matches, Halifax would have picked up a cumulative nine-match suspension during the York match, which saw no players carded by referee Aaron Moore.

Grix told the Panthers' website: "It's bad news, poor news, from the match review panel, which will hinder us down the line in the next few weeks.

"But to what degree is up to us. We can sulk about it, moan and say it's someone else's fault, or we can just crack on and keep our standards high, that's all we can do.

"At the time, the referee's very close. He's got a tough job.

"I think for three of those citations there was no penalty given, so whether it's done in review and they've had a look at it.

"I think there's a bit of play-acting, people make the most of it now. I'm not just referring to these incidents but you look at the game and there's people laying around on the floor, they're diving on the ground when they get a bit of contact, which attracts some attention.

"One of them I do disagree with would be the tip-tackle. Yes, granted, he does land in an awkward position, however, he's a big man who can probably find the ground on his own terms more often than not and I think on that one, he is on his own terms but I think he makes it look like it's not.

"There's definitely a forward roll and a spin in there which we've seen many a time, which is unfortunate, but people will continue to do it if we don't clamp down on the play-acting and all that sort of behaviour.

"It is what it is. I'll have a conversation about it, am I going to hold my breath and expect it to go away? No, but there's definitely something to defend there I think.

"The speed of his movement I don't think is natural."

In a statement, the RFL said: "The Match Review Panel meets every Thursday to consider incidents from the previous weekend’s Championship and League One fixtures (they consider incidents from Super League fixtures on the Monday) – all players charged have the chance to appeal at the independent operational rules tribunal the following Tuesday.(they are therefore free to play this weekend before the bans kick in)

"We haven’t heard yet from Halifax if any of their players will be challenging the charges or recommended bans."