x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 21 July 2017

Brown comes under fire

Nathan Brown, the Huddersfield coach, has been accused of introducing the grapple tackle into Super League.

Nathan Brown, the Huddersfield coach, has been accused of introducing the grapple tackle into Super League. The controversial technique, which involves a tackler attempting to impede the ball-carrier with a choke hold-like grip, gained notoriety in Australia's National Rugby League and Brown, the former St George Illawarra coach, was the subject of a verbal attack from Terry Matterson, a fellow Australian and his opposite number at Castleford, after the Tigers won 26-24 at the Jungle on Saturday.

"They have done a good job eradicating the grapple tackle in the NRL with two referees but Huddersfield have brought it here," said Matterson. We don't want people around guys' necks." Brown launched a strong defence of the accusation. "We don't grapple," insisted Brown. "We're getting harshly mistreated. If we end up around heads, we should be penalised. We don't practise it. I don't believe in it myself."

Warrington coach Tony Smith feels his side have hit rock bottom after a 60-8 defeat at Harlequins condemned the Wolves to their worst start to a season. Smith's men have now lost all five matches this season and were well off the pace at the Stoop. "As far as I am concerned we have hit the lowest point, but sometimes you have to reach that to start climbing again," said Smith. In Australia's NRL, Canberra recruit William Zillman came off the bench to score an 80-metre solo effort to clinch the Gold Coast's 34-20 win over Newcastle yesterday.

In the other game, Nathan Merritt scored a hat-trick as South Sydney recorded a huge 52-12 win - their largest winning margin against the Sydney Roosters in 57 years. * PA