Cockerill bewildered by PRO14 officiating
EDINBURGH head coach Richard Cockerill slammed the officiating in the PRO14 following his side’s stuttering win over Zebre on Friday night.
Cockerill has been critical of referees in recent weeks and was furious with Italian referee Marius Mitrea after this one.
He said: “It is hard to play any type of rugby when the game is poorly officiated. We have had some really, really bad calls in the last four weeks.
“This week there seemed to be no offside line; for the competition to have any credibility that has to be looked at because I have not seen anything like it anywhere else I have coached.
“We can all see it, so why are things being ignored?”
After a strong start by Zebre, Edinburgh finally got themselves into proceedings and won a series of penalties which led to Jason Tovey opening the scoring for 3-0 on the ninth minute.
Still it was Zebre with most of the possession and they made it count midway through the half when South African back row Johan Meyer barged through a couple of poor tackles for an unconverted try.
Edinburgh needed something to spark them into life and got it through Stuart McInally.
The 27-year-old hooker received the ball in midfield just inside his own half, went through a couple of tackles and then pinned his ears back to touch down.
The conversion gave Edinburgh a 10-5 lead but with plenty to work on in the second half.
And it was Zebre who nearly added their second try soon after the break. A great run through the middle by replacement Ciaran Gaffney set up winger Giovanbattista Venditti, but the ball was lost forward.
Replacement Duncan Weir kicked a penalty to make it 13-5 to Edinburgh in the 57th minute, but Zebre were soon just a point behind when No.9 Marcello Violi charged down a kick by opposite number Nathan Fowles to run in for the converted try. And with 14 minutes to go the Italians took a 15-13 lead with a Violi penalty.
Edinburgh had to dig deep and three minutes later they earned a penalty within range and Weir kicked the points.