McGil­l­vary faces pos­si­ble charge over an al­leged bite on Le­banon’s cap­tain

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ENG­LAND ARE fac­ing an anx­ious wait to dis­cover if winger Jer­maine McGil­l­vary will be charged over an al­leged bite on Le­banon cap­tain Rob­bie Farah.

Farah raised the com­plaint to Wake­field ref­eree Ben Thaler two min­utes into the sec­ond half of Eng­land’s 29-10 win over the Cedars at the Syd­ney Foot­ball Sta­dium on Satur­day after he was in­volved in a tackle on the Hud­der­s­field man.

Thaler did not pe­nalise McGil­l­vary but placed the in­ci­dent on re­port and it will now go be­fore the tour­na­ment match-re­view panel on to­day.

“Things hap­pen in a split sec­ond on the field and you re­act,” said Farah. “I made a com­plaint on the field and I’ll leave it at that.

“I don’t think I need to say much else. There is a bit of footage there. It’s pretty clear for ev­ery­one to see what hap­pened on the re­play.”

Eng­land im­posed a me­dia ban on McGil­l­vary im­me­di­ately after the match and head coach Wayne Ben­nett com­mented lit­tle on the in­ci­dent in the post-match press con­fer­ence.

“It’s a bit hard for me to make a com­ment,” said Ben­nett. “I have no more in­for­ma­tion than you’ve got. From where I’m sit­ting I can’t tell you whether he bit him or not.”

Eng­land, who moved on to Perth yes­ter­day to set up camp ahead of their fi­nal group game against France, will be des­per­ate to re­tain the ser­vices of McGil­l­vary, who has one of the lead­ing lights in their cam­paign so far.

One of only two spe­cial­ist wingers in Ben­nett’s 24-man squad, he was given the play­ers’ man of the match after scor­ing Eng­land’s only points in the 18-4 de­feat by Aus­tralia in Mel­bourne and got an­other try against Le­banon to take his to­tal to seven in eight ap­pear­ances.

It is the sec­ond bit­ing al­le­ga­tion of the World Cup. Wales prop Ben Evans made the ac­cu­sa­tion against Papu New Guinea’s Welling­ton Al­bert during the first week­end but the case was not proven.

The RLWC2017 match re­view panel, which con­sists of chair­man Michael Buet­tner and pan­elists Ben Ross and Michael Hodg­son, will meet this morn­ing to dis­cuss the in­ci­dent and will is­sue any charge by 5pm.

The player would have un­til noon on Tues­day to make a plea and any dis­ci­plinary hear­ing would be held from 6pm on Wed­nes­day via a video link to NRL head­quar­ters in Moore Park, Syd­ney.

Cases are heard by a three-man panel, chaired by ei­ther the Honor­able Jus­tice Ge­off Bellew or his deputy, mag­is­trate Robert Abood, and two mem­bers from a list that in­cludes for­mer Great Bri­tain in­ter­na­tional Bar­rie-Jon Mather and ex-Su­per League play­ers Tony Pule­tua and Bob Lind­ner.

Any ban will be served in the tour­na­ment and can be car­ried over into the player’s do­mes­tic com­pe­ti­tion.

Alex Walm­s­ley is de­ter­mined to push on in the World Cup after com­plet­ing his re­cov­ery from a de­bil­i­tat­ing ill­ness to make his Eng­land de­but.

The St He­lens prop has re­vealed how he spent three days on a drip after be­ing felled by a mys­tery virus and is still striv­ing to put the weight back on that he lost in the build-up to the open­ing game of the tour­na­ment against Aus­tralia.

For­mer Bat­ley Bull­dogs for­ward Walm­s­ley was forced to miss that clash in Syd­ney but re­cov­ered suf­fi­ciently to win his first cap in the win over Le­banon.

“To fi­nally get out there and put the shirt on was a huge hon­our,” he said.

“It was a very proud mo­ment in my ca­reer.

“I’ve been close on oc­ca­sions be­fore and at one point last week I thought I was never go­ing to make it.

“It was a re­ally tough ill­ness and it knocked me for six. I was strug­gling for a good week and find­ing my­self on a drip for three days wasn’t ideal lead­ing into a World Cup.

“I’m still work­ing to put the weight back on but the doc has done a great job with me, get­ting me back fit and this game was im­por­tant for me to build on, get­ting a few min­utes un­der my belt and hope­fully I can con­tinue to do that next week against France and build for the rest of the tour­na­ment.”

Speak­ing about the win over Le­banon, Dews­bury-born Walm­s­ley said: “There were as­pects where we were good I think,” said Walm­s­ley.

“There was a lot of en­ergy, a lot of ef­fort, in our de­fence in par­tic­u­lar.

“I think for the vast ma­jor­ity of the game we de­fended re­ally well. We were a bit scratchy with the ball so there’s some­thing to work on there but I think the main ob­jec­tive was get­ting the win, which we did. We com­pleted in that sense but there’s also lots to build on.”

Ben­nett was pleased with the de­but of Walm­s­ley, who ran 135 me­tres and made six tack­les and is look­ing to make big­ger con­tri­bu­tions through­out the rest of the tour­na­ment.

“I was happy with how it went per­son­ally,” he said. “There were no er­rors. It was im­por­tant to put in a strong start, es­pe­cially com­ing off the back of a bit of ill­ness.

“I’m happy to do what­ever Wayne wants me to do.”

2 Num­ber of tries scored by Hud­der­s­field Gi­ants’s Eng­land winger Jer­maine McGil­lvray during the World Cup.


IN THE SPOT­LIGHT: Hud­der­s­field Gi­ants’ Eng­land winger Jer­maine McGil­lvray, above, has been ac­cused of bit­ing Le­banon cap­tain Rob­bie Farah, during the 29-10 World Cup win. Alex Walm­s­ley, left, came off the bench to make his in­ter­na­tional de­but.

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