Barnstaple dissatisfied after by controversial defeat to Weston-super-Mare
Barnstaple are seeking clarification of the rules regarding temporary uncontested scrums after their 31-13 defeat by Weston-super-Mare in National Three South West.
The game went to uncontested scrums in the first half after referee Richard Harding issued three yellow cards to Weston players – one of which was to a prop forward.
Barnstaple claim there was no reason for Weston to go to uncontested scrums if they had a match-day squad conforming to competition rules. Kevin Squire, Barnstaple's director of rugby, said his side suffered by going to uncontested scrums as they had Weston under the cosh up front at the time.
"We had been battering Weston in scrums close to their line and the only way they could stop us was illegally, hence the three yellow cards," said Squire.
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"Then, when we had them on the rack with three men missing in the pack, the scrums go to uncontested, which means we aren't even allowed to try shoving Weston back over their own line from a penalty.
"At the time we were 13-12 up and on top. Who's to say during the seven or eight minutes they were down to 12 men that we would not have scored at least one try and maybe two?
"I know we lost by 18 points, but would that have happened had we been 25-12 up at half-time, which we could have been with contested scrums?"
Lynford Brock and Sam Roberts were the Barum try scorers with Luke Berry kicking a penalty.
Weston's win moved them up to second place in the table, ousting Exmouth, whose game against visiting Redingensians was postponed. Also off was Newton Abbot's trip to Malvern.
Brixham were 27-8 winners over Avonmouth, which gave them a double over the Bristolians and sixth place in the table.
Sam Thomas, Matt Crosscombe and Alun Glanvill scored the tries with Ben Lovell converting all three and a couple of penalties.
Brixham paraded former Plymouth Albion prop Ryan Hopkins for the first time and the difference up front was noticeable.
"We drove Avonmouth over at the first two scrums, won a penalty and were ahead after three minutes," said Brixham coach Dan Parkes.
"It was nice to have scrum dominance, which I haven't said too often, and I can see Ryan being an asset for us."
Taunton's National Two South game against Henley was another weather casualty.
Camborne rose to second in South West One after a 32-22 win over Wadebridge Camels, but claimed promotion talk is a bit premature. Luke Johnson (two), Dean Pascoe, Lawrie Manna and Rob Floyd were the try scorers, with Johnson kicking the rest of the points in the absence through illness of David Mankee.
Mike Symons, Camborne's director of rugby, was quick to play down promotion talk.
"Old Reds are only three points behind us with two games in hand," said Symons. "We need them to fall over twice, while not losing ourselves. I am not saying it can't be done, but it is a tall order."
The Wadebridge try scorers were lock Dan Lumb and, late on, replacement Miles Davey and scrum-half Adam Collings, with James Grubb adding the conversion with the final kick of the game. Fly-half Josh Taylor converted Lumb's try and kicked a penalty.