St George Illawarra’s Josh Dugan needs surgery after scans showed he suffered a broken jaw in New South Wales’ 18-14 State of Origin win at Sydney’s Olympic stadium on Wednesday night.
Dugan will have a plate inserted into his jaw after he was hit high by a Greg Inglis shoulder charge for which the South Sydney centre will miss three matches through suspension.
“Scans showed a broken jaw, surgery to put a plate in tomorrow! Will be doing everything I can to get back ASAP for the dragons.” Dugan tweeted on Thursday.
Inglis pleaded guilty to a grade-two charge, which former NRL referees boss Bill Harrigan earlier indicated was fair.
While Blues Origin great Andrew Johns claimed the incident did not even merit an on-field penalty, Harrigan believed Inglis had only has himself to blame.
“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.”
Inglis was penalised only after the video referees bunker intervened while the on-field referees initially took no action over the incident.
Johns strongly disagreed with the call, although Inglis appeared to move into Dugan’s path and brace his shoulder.
“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.”
Harrigan ‘wouldn’t have picked Sutton’
Harrigan has also slammed head referee Gerard Sutton saying he would not have selected him.
Sixteen penalties were blown in the match, the equal-second most in an Origin match since 1996. Twelve of those were also given in favour of the Blues.
“When you get into a State of Origin you’ve got to have a feel for the game and an empathy for the game,” said Harrigan, who refereed 21 Origins.
“And I just think that Gerry didn’t have that feel last night.”
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 Blues 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.