Penalty count irks Stormers boss
Cape Town - Stormers coach Allister Coetzee feels that the Brumbies’ high penalty count at Newlands on Saturday should have resulted in referee Stuart Berry showing more yellow cards.
The Stormers fought back from 16-3 down to win the match 25-24, but Coetzee was not impressed with the Brumbies’ technique at the breakdown.
That the Brumbies would look to slow down Stormers ball was always expected, but the end penalty count of 19-5 irked Coetzee.
“That’s the frustration. They were happy and prepared to concede the penalties and made sure that we couldn’t get quick ball from breakdown,” Coetzee said.
“At some stage - some point - it should be escalated to more yellow cards … I just feel that there were a lot of occasions at breakdown which I am not happy about.
“I’ll have to have a look and give feedback to the referee.”
The Brumbies were shown one yellow card when Jordan Smiler was sent to the sin bin following his tip-tackle on Schalk Burger, but Berry kept the cards in his pocket throughout a string of Brumbies fouls at the breakdown and at scrum time.
“You cannot play a game, a stop-start affair, and just concede penalties and be content by it,” added Coetzee.
“19 penalties in a game, it’s just ridiculous.”
Coetzee also felt that his side should have been awarded a penalty try after they opted for a scrum five meters out from the Brumbies line in the second half.
“I was really surprised,” said Coetzee.
“They were seven forwards at that time and we had clear dominance and they were just deliberately taking it to ground every time, so it definitely should have been a penalty try.”
In a match in which there were five or six occasions where it looked like it might spill over into a brawl, Coetzee praised the composure his players demonstrated throughout the 80 minutes.
“The Brumbies are really a good side, but they wanted to take us into a dog fight,” he said.
“And they had a nice lead where we could easily have been lured into actually being stupid - punch off the ball or get into more scuffles. We held our nerve with that.”
The Stormers, now top of the South African conference, have a bye this weekend while the Brumbies are in Johannesburg to take on The Lions.