LEEDS RHINOS’ England forward Brett Ferres felt hard done by over his sin-binning in the 36-22 Ladbrokes Challenge Cup defeat at Huddersfield Giants.
Ferres was yellow carded for protesting after Giants’ third try, just before half-time. The ball came loose from his grasp just short of the line, Giants picked up and Ryan Brierley raced away to score a crucial touchdown, opening up an 18-6 lead for the hosts.
Referee Ben Thaler banished Ferres for 10 minutes after he voiced his anger and speaking afterwards, the Leeds man was adamant the ball had been stripped.
He said: “One hundred per cent, I wouldn’t drop the ball when it’s two metres away from the tryline.
“I’ll do anything to keep the ball and score a try, I haven’t scored one this season.
“I was disappointed with the call. Personally I don’t seem to get many calls go for me at the minute. I don’t know why that is, but obviously that’s the referees and I don’t want to talk about them too much.
“It is disappointing, the poor thing is you can’t speak to referees now. They can say what they want to you, it was all right for Thaler to have a bit of banter with me a few weeks ago and try to show me up on a Sky game, but I try to speak to him and it’s not allowed.”
Friday’s defeat ended Leeds’ two-year reign as Cup holders.
“It’s a tough one, really disappointing,” Ferres – who moved to Leeds from Huddersfield – said. “We got off to a decent start, then put the cue on the rack for the rest of the game.
“We made too many bad errors and gifted way too much possession to Huddersfield. Credit to them, they capitalised on that.
“We are making too many errors and we are getting found out. You can’t afford to do that, so it is a big week ahead of us.”
After Rhinos led inside the opening minute, Ferres admitted they shot themselves in the foot.
“We gifted them too much possession, a lot of cheap ball,” he said.
“You get burned against good sides and that’s what happened. The defence is not where it needs to be at the minute.
“We let Huddersfield play way too fast and you can’t do that for 80 minutes in a game, it catches up with you and I think that showed towards the end.”
Ferres admitted too many errors with the ball put pressure on Rhinos’ defence.
“We weren’t disciplined in what we were doing,” he added. “We dug a few sets out and we couldn’t back that up.
“That’s disappointing. We looked good in a couple of moments and looked like a real side, but then we go away from that.
“I don’t think we are ruthless in what we are doing.
“I think once we find that bit of ruthlessness we will be a fair side. We have to be consistent in what we do.”
Rhinos face a crucial game in three days’ time, at home to another of Ferres’ former clubs Castleford Tigers.
Daryl Powell’s side are eighth in First Utility Super League, five points ahead of 12th-placed Leeds.
A Rhinos win would revive their hopes of qualifying for the Super-8s, but if they lose they will be pushed another step closer to the Qualifiers and a battle against relegation.
Tigers won 18-14 when the teams met at the Jungle over Easter and Ferres said: “It’s a big local derby and it’s obviously very special for me, playing against Cas.
“I’ll be looking to go out there and right some wrongs. I was disappointed with my performance [on Friday] and I want to go out there and restore some pride in myself and do that for the Leeds fans as well.”