Red-carded Featherstone prop Paul Wood claimed he was gouged before being sent off against Leigh Centurions.
The ex-Great Britain prop Wood was dismissed in the 26th minute for punching Bob Beswick after preventing his opponent from burrowing over at Blackpool’s Summer Bash.
The Leigh hooker claimed his rival had actually gouged him while on the ground underneath the Featherstone player, prompting him to strike out. But Wood himself countered he had been a victim of the same offence.
Beswick was sin-binned for retaliation with the game level at 6-6 but it was the champions who went on to record a remarkable 26th consecutive win. But Rovers were furious as, just three minutes earlier, Leigh replacement Gareth Hock had floored young prop Jordan Baldwinson, to be reprimanded with only a penalty.
On the red card, Hay said: “He’s not like that Woody normally is he? He’s a pretty good front-rower – very tough, plays the game tough – but he’s complained of an eye gouge and I’m sure that’s why he reacted why he did. We got penalised quite a bit and there was stuff going on off the ball. We have to have a look at these games and maybe have a stronger referee or a referee who starts as he means to go on.”
Ben Blackmore scored for Rovers after just 96 seconds, Paul Sykes converting, but Leigh hit back with the first of Gregg McNally’s hat-trick.
He added his second in the 33rd minute, Ryan Brierley dropping a goal with the final play of the half.
Leigh took a firm grip early in the second period with tries from Greg Worthington and Mickey Higham.
McNally completed his treble before Hock, Moore and Liam Kay all received yellow cards, Ian Hardman getting a late consolation for Rovers.
Featherstone Rovers: Hitchcox; Blackmore, Hardman, Minns, Sharp; Sykes, Moore; Baldwinson, Ellis, Wood, Maitua, Cording, James. Subs (all used): Teasdale, Bostock, Carvell, Verlinden.
Leigh Centurions: McNally; Pownall, Platt, Worthington, Kay; Ridyard, Brierley; Moimoi, Beswick, Emmitt, Dixon, Goulden, Barlow. Subs: Higham, Wilkes, Hopkins, Hock.
Referee: Chris Leatherbarrow.