SYDNEY Roosters coach Trent Robinson launched a blistering attack on "incompetent" NRL match officials for their failure to immediately sanction Eels five-eighth Dylan Brown, who was placed on report 20 minutes after an incident that led to Albion Park-Oak Flats product Drew Hutchison being rushed to hospital with a suspected punctured lung.
The three-time premiership-winning Roosters coach didn't hold back after the club's injury crisis deepened when their five-eighth was clattered by Brown's knees as the Eels player slid to save a potential try in Parramatta's 31-18 win at Bankwest Stadium on Friday night.
The NRL bunker viewed multiple replays but didn't immediately punish Brown despite having placed Parramatta centre Marata Niukore on report when his shoulder appeared to contact the head of James Tedesco earlier in the same play.
Robinson said the Roosters, who also featured Kiama's Josh Morris on Friday, were later told only moments before the start of the second half that Brown had been placed on report, which gave them a free interchange.
There were reports Hutchison, who was also believed to have suffered broken ribs, needed to be given oxygen in the dressing sheds at half-time.
"They looked at it 10 times and they couldn't find anything," Robinson said.
"And then, they had all of half-time, but we ran onto the field and they told us it was on report.
"They could have told us 10 minutes into the break so I could have made a change in the dressing room, but they told us as we were running out onto the field so I had to make a split-second decision. It's incompetent.
"To not see that . . . a guy goes to hospital. It's ridiculous. That wasn't good enough tonight.
"They don't need me to ask the question - they should be looking at it themselves.
"How does it take 20 minutes to put someone on report? How many looks do they need to do it? They need to ask questions of themselves. It's poor."
Hutchison walked from the field at half-time and Roosters teammates later said his situation was "serious".
Roosters medicos had already ruled out Victor Radley with a concussion and cleared Matt Ikuvalu, who also dislocated a finger, of concussion following a head assessment - as the club's unbelievable injury crisis took another turn.
In the same week, the Roosters confirmed Brett Morris and Lindsay Collins (both ACL tears), as well as Sam Verrills (detached retina), had suffered significant injuries in the win over the Knights, there was a serious concern for Hutchison.
The Eels weren't without their own injury problems either as hooker Reed Mahoney suffered a concussion after his head was caught in an awkward position trying to tackle Daniel Tupou.
A first half-double by Bryce Cartwright and another by winger Blake Ferguson gave the hosts an 18-12 lead at the break, despite two tries from Ikuvalu.
The latter managed to complete his hat-trick in the second half but four-pointers to Tom Opacic and Dylan Brown, as well as five conversions and a field goal from Mitchell Moses, secured the Eels, coached by Batemans Bay's Brad Arthur, their eighth win of 2021.
We depend on subscription revenue to support our journalism. If you are able, please subscribe here. If you are already a subscriber, thank you for your support.