Ospreys v Connacht: Call to clarify 'nonsense' scrums
JONATHAN Humphreys has called for the refereeing of scrums to be clarified after the Ospreys beat Connacht in a game where he described the set-piece as “nonsense”.
The Ospreys’ bonus-point 26-9 victory was their fourth RaboDirect Pro12 win in a row, but the match was interrupted by a host of scrum-related stoppages.
Referee George Clancy awarded eight penalties from scrums and, having also been frustrated during last weekend’s Heineken Cup defeat to Leicester, Humphreys wants a clear definition of the rules.
“It’s turning into a nonsense,” said the Ospreys’ forwards coach.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Sunday, June 30 2013
“Clarification has got to happen.
“We have a scrum which we’re proud of but it’s very difficult to get any momentum in the game when every other scrum results in a penalty for or against.
“I’ll be seeking clarification. That area is very frustrating for everyone concerned at the moment.”
Despite the disruption of the scrums, the Ospreys were sufficiently clinical to recover from last Sunday’s loss at Leicester by seeing off Connacht with maximum points.
“I thought the effort was outstanding,” said Humphreys. “It took us a little while this week to get over the disappointment of last weekend.
“The endeavour was outstanding. We got what we wanted out of the game but there’s room for improvement.
“In terms of the effort from the group, you couldn’t have asked for much more. I don’t think people really understand how much it took out of the boys last weekend in terms of the disappointment.
“It was great to see the group stick together and get what we wanted out of the game.”
The Ospreys contacted the European Rugby Cup’s head of refereeing after the defeat to Leicester, and Humphreys was equally frustrated on Saturday.
Clancy awarded the Ospreys and Connacht four penalties each from scrums, though both teams seemed equally confused by the decisions.
Ryan Bevington, who was sin-binned at Leicester, was penalised again on Saturday but Humphreys was perplexed as to why the Wales prop was punished.
“I’ve got a guy in Ryan Bevington who’s a powerful scrummager. He’s been dominant in a lot of games this year,” he added.
“He’s not doing anything differently and yet there comes a point where, if a scrum ends up on the floor, he’ll get a 50-50 call.
“Clarification has got to happen. As far as I’m aware, the ‘hit’ is not in the rule book but it’s becoming the dominant thing of the scrum.
“We got penalised a couple of times last weekend for not accepting the hit but that’s not in the rule books.”