Nuuausala has been ‘frustrated’ by refereeing standard

Frank-Paul Nu'uausala has played five games for Wigan
Frank-Paul Nu'uausala has played five games for Wigan

Mid-season recruit Frank-Paul Nuuausala admits he has found one big difference between Super League and the NRL – the standard of refereeing.

The former New Zealand Test prop has played five games for Wigan since signing a three-and-a-half year deal.

He says there are subtle differences with the style of play in Super League, such as the speed and physicality. But the biggest adjustment has been the quality and consistency of the refereeing, which he says is way below what he was used to at Canberra and the Sydney Roosters.

Nuuausala said: “It’s a bit different here, the game is maybe a bit slower here but more physical.

“The refereeing is different - they’re not as consistent as they should be. It has been poor.”

The NRL is controlled by two referees, but Nuuausala continued: “I don’t think that has anything to do with it. It’s the calls, and how they manage the game... I think that’s English rugby league and I’m getting used to it.

“I’ve been a bit frustrated by that, but all-in-all I’m enjoying my time here.”

Nuuausala – nicknamed ‘The Wrecking Ball’ – had not played for three months when he was given his Wigan debut by Shaun Wane.

His run of games was interrupted by a one-match ban, but he has shown signs of improvement.

“I feel each week I’m improving, finding my groove, and learning how to play in Super League,” he said. Away from the pitch, he and his family have quickly settled into their new home.

“Things are becoming natural, I’m finding my way around Wigan now,” added the 29-year-old.

“The weather has been good – the boys complain it’s too hot, but for me it’s just right!

“I had two weeks over on my own, which was tough, but my wife and baby are over now and they’ve definitely settled in.”