Arthur explodes over Panthers’ ref manipulation
Eels coach Brad Arthur has fired up over the Panthers' clear manipulation of the referee in the dying minutes of the epic semi-final clash, which hijacked a Parramatta raid deep in Penrith territory.
Trailing Penrith 8-6 in the 76th minute of the sudden-death Mackay fixture, the Eels were halted in attack by referee Ashley Klein when a Panthers trainer hurtled onto the field and called for the official to stop play.
Panthers hooker Mitch Kenny had been left injured in backplay, after Parramatta front-rower Reagan Campbell-Gillard accidentally stomped on his foot while carrying the ball up the field.
Melbourne legend Billy Slater called out Penrith over their controversial move just moments after it occurred.
"They moved quick then to stop that play," Slater said on Nine.
"That was only in the tackle before."
Arthur then weighed in during his post-match press conference.
"We're trying to make the game faster," Arthur said.
"How many stoppages were there tonight? How many when we were starting to get on top? There were a lot."