Ben Thaler has established a reputation as one of the Super League’s leading referees.
He burst onto the scene with the whistle in 2001 in the Championship, with Thaler then promoted to top referee in 2005.
Since then, the Yorkshireman has improved year on year, becoming a constant figure in RFL thinking in several seasons.
However, in the 2022 Super League season, Thaler was absent with the whistle, instead of being listed as a reserve referee as well as a video referee, you eventually returned as a middle man in the top flight for Castleford Tigers’ game against Leeds Rhinos at the Magic Weekend.
It was a welcome return for the local Normanton who has refereed regularly in the Championship, impressing with his communication and confidence, which raised the question of why he had to wait so long to get a Super League game?
Serious About Rugby League recently contacted the RFL to ask why, with a spokesperson saying: “he’s in the mix with the other full-time (and part-time) officials”.
This means that Thaler was simply not selected, although he’s curious why that is.
With that in mind and a strong showing at the weekend, it will likely mean a lot more time in the Super League with the whistle blowing for the remainder of the 2022 season.
Meanwhile, Robert Hicks grabbed headlines for a video refereeing decision that ended up being the centerpiece of Hull KR’s loss to Hull FC in the final game last night.
Hicks turned down Elliot Minchella’s ‘try’ due to a hit from the former Bradford Bulls man, with the official saying there was a separation between the hand and the ball.
Although the on-court decision was sent as a tryout, Hicks overruled it, much to the surprise of the majority of viewers.
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