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Keighley Cougars chief Demetriou blasts ref in defeat
Leigh Centurions 40 Keighley Cougars 14 Cougars coach Jason Demetriou was left furious at referee Gareth Hewer tonight as Keighley were well beaten by Leigh for the second time in a fortnight.
Having lost 26-0 at home to the Centurions earlier this month, Cougars were out to make amends but the hosts ran away with it in the second half to go second in the table.
Demetriou accepted that Leigh were good value for their win but was unhappy with the performance of Hewer.
The Australian said: “I thought the referee gave one of the most biased displays I’ve ever seen.
“The penalty count was 13-2 in Leigh’s favour. I have no issue with the ones given against us but he refused to point his arm the other way.
“It was embarrassing. Like I said, I have no issue with our penalties but we should have got a lot more the other way.
“Saying that, I was hugely impressed with Leigh and don’t want to take anything away from them. They are a quality side and deserve to be second in the table.”
Dual-registered Castleford half-back Ryan Brierley scored a second-half hat-trick after Keighley had taken an early lead with a Sam Obst try at Leigh Sports Village.
The hosts hit back to lead 6-4 at half-time after a Kevin Henderson touchdown and then pulled away in the second half through Brierley’s efforts, two more tries from Dean McGilvray and another from Martyn Ridyard, who also kicked six goals.
The Cougars’ other tries came from Demetriou and Semi Tadulala , who earlier had a spell in the sin-bin.
Despite the defeat, Demetriou remained upbeat. He said: “We need to work on our kick defence as most of their tries came from kicks but there were lots of positives for us.
“I didn’t think the scoreline reflected the game and we will take confidence from this going into the play-offs.”