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Leicester boss Cockerill: I don't know who's refereeing the game any more

Published 26/12/2015

Leicester director of rugby Richard Cockerill saw his side have two tries against Newcastle chalked off
Leicester director of rugby Richard Cockerill saw his side have two tries against Newcastle chalked off

Leicester boss Richard Cockerill has questioned whether Television Match Officials should have as much influence as they do after seeing two tries wiped off the board in the Tigers' 22-10 win over Newcastle.

The Tigers were not at their fluent best and had to settle for three tries, but both Telusa Veainu and Mat Tait had first-half scores ruled out after consultation with the TMO.

While the first one was clearly a knock-on, the second decision appeared more marginal, and Cockerill believes referee Tim Wigglesworth should have made the call rather than relying on outside help.

"Mat Tait's try could have gone either way, but you have the referee saying I can't see anything wrong with it but then the TMO is saying it's a knock-on so I don't know who's refereeing the game any more," the Tigers director of rugby said.

"It used to be that the attack got the benefit of the doubt but it seems to be that the defence is getting the benefit now, but is it a knock-on or not? In slow motion I can't really tell, but that's what the big screen is for and that's for the referee to make his mind up.

"I'll take the four points but we were pretty ordinary, we were inaccurate and created lots of opportunities but Newcastle came and fought hard and made us work very hard for it.

"Newcastle were good and their set-piece was excellent and they worked hard, but if you're inaccurate and you let the official in and you don't control it yourself then you get what you get."

Newcastle dropped to the foot of the Aviva Premiership table as a result of London Irish's win over Northampton, and will rue letting a 10-0 lead slip.

But director of rugby Dean Richards believes his side are turning the corner, even if they lacked accuracy.

"If we can have a little bit more patience in attack and we didn't have that today, the first 20 minutes we showed that patience and that shape and it caused them problems and as soon as we lost that patience, our game went to pot a little bit and we had to defend long periods," said Richards.

"When we did get the ball, we tended to lose it within two to three phases but it comes back to that ability to have that patience that we lost after about 25 minutes.

"I thought our pack was outstanding but again it comes down to that little bit of accuracy but I thought we defended really well.

"We're not even a third of the way through the season yet but as we have in the last few seasons we tend to come out and surprise people towards the end of the season and we'll start to get the wins that we want."

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