Sydney - Sharks coach John Plumtree added to the criticism of referee Paul Marks on Tuesday as he said the official's decisions cost his team victory in the Super 14 match against New South Wales.
Plumtree told the Sharks Web site that those "big decisions" were responsible for his team's fourth defeat in four games this season.
"There were some big decisions that went against us and they seriously cost us," Plumtree said as his team attempts to come to terms with its winless start to the Super 14.
The Sharks lost 25-21 to the Waratahs on Saturday after Marks failed to award the South African outfit a penalty try two minutes from the end. Waratahs' player Kurtley Beale had illegally knocked down a pass to Ryan Kankowski that would have resulted in a late try for the Sharks. Beale was yellow-carded by Marks but the home team escaped a penalty try.
Plumtree said it would have been a try "but for that act of cynical play from Kurtley Beale".
"There was also a pass to Bismarck du Plessis that was called forward," Plumtree said, "which on analysis was shown to be legitimate and again we would have scored from."
Sharks and Springbok captain John Smit said after the game that the Sharks had done enough to win, "but the scoreboard tells a different story", an obvious reference to Sydney-based referee Marks.
But Plumtree also said that bad decisions were part of the game and the Sharks would have to get over their latest disappointment ahead of three more matches on the five-week Australia and New Zealand tour.
"It happens and we are not focusing on it in our post-match analysis," he said.
"We played the better rugby for most of the second half and finished pretty much on top. We will just carry on fighting until we get that first win and hopefully get on a roll," Plumtree said.
Plumtree also confirmed flank Keegan Daniel will be tested for concussion and is in doubt for the match against the Brumbies.
The Sharks play Brumbies in Canberra on Saturday before games against Hurricanes and Highlanders in New Zealand.