Anderson furious at Morley's slap on wrist

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The Independent Online

The Australia coach, Chris Anderson, has condemned the decision to allow Adrian Morley to play in the remaining two Ashes Tests, despite his sending-off in the first on Saturday.

Morley, who was sent off after 12 seconds for a reckless high tackle on Robbie Kearns, was fined £2,000 but escaped suspension when the Australian representative on a three-man panel was out-voted by his British colleagues.

Anderson believes that the verdict does the game a disservice. "It's pretty disappointing for rugby league when winning can be put on top of everything else," said Anderson, who recalled that he had a player, Jason Stevens, suspended for one Test on video evidence during the last Ashes series in 2001.

Anderson added: "Terry Newton should have been going up there too.

"Newton knocked one bloke out and had a go at another, yet we weren't allowed to cite him. If blokes are getting knocked out, that's not what the game's about. We've come a long way from there."

Newton said he would not be changing his approach radically for the second Test, but admitted: "I probably let myself down with a few silly penalties."

Anderson has named the Brisbane centre Michael De Vere as the replacement for Phil Bailey, who has a fractured eye socket.

"He's a great competitor, a very tough defender and he gives us another goal-kicker," said Anderson, who described the injured Brett Kimmorley and Shannon Hegarty as making steady progress. They have been having treatment for thigh and ankle injuries in a hyperbaric chamber.

One of the Great Britain players not involved in the first Test, Kevin Sinfield, has agreed a new five-year contract that will keep him at Leeds until 2008.

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