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Gloucester Rugby: Nigel Davies slams referee Tim Wigglesworth after Bath "farce"

By The Citizen  |  Posted: April 13, 2014

  • Nigel Davies

Nigel Davies has slammed referee Tim Wigglesworth as the West Country derby descended into a "farce".

The Hull official sent off both Sila Puafisi and Tavis Knoyle, gave five yellow cards and awarded a penalty try in an ill-tempered local derby.

Tempers were also frayed off the pitch with a bottle appearing to have been thrown in the direction of the referee following full time.

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Davies did not see that incident but he could not hide his frustration in how the game spiralled out of control.

He said: “Right from the start of the game the lack of consistency shown really frustrated a lot of players from both sides.

"When it is not managed and there is no consistency, you are going to get frustration.

"There was obviously a lot of reaction to what everyone thought was a lack of consistency with some of the calls.

"The players work very hard to put stuff together and be the best that they can be, and when there is a lack of consistency it is very difficult.

“"We have got to look at ourselves first. Our discipline, regardless of anything else, has not been good enough this season.

"By the time they were awarded a penalty try, it had turned into a farce.”

Meanwhile Bath head coach Mike Ford has called for an inquiry into the events at Kingsholm, but was satisfied his side had not buckled under the pressure in the Kingsholm cauldron.

He said: “There were a lot of controversies during the game.

“We had to deal with it, and the players and the decision-making on the field was fantastic.

"We are really pleased to come through a very hostile, ferocious Kingsholm and stay in the top four.

“But I think there should be an enquiry. "I think so. We've had four yellow cards all year, and we got three in one game.

“Derby games are very passionate and players get on the edge.

“Let’s take all our yellows in isolation, especially the Carl Fearns one. He actually went into a ruck and got his hands on the ball and got cleared out. There was nothing wrong with that.

“We pride ourselves on these challenges that occur during a game. We try and pride ourselves on figuring a way to win and understanding what is going on.

"The referees have got to understand what is going on out there. It's crucial, absolutely crucial. Why he never used the TMO, I don't know.

"I am not here to call the referee at all, honestly. I just want to be positive on what we have done.”

Ford was taken aback by the brawl in the dying minutes and said Bath had to “defend themselves”.

He continued: “I was really surprised with how heated it got. What happened at the end with Tavis Knoyle - there is no place for that.

“He just assaulted one of our players. We've got to defend ourselves. You can lose control, can't you?

"We are just going to concentrate on what we do. It's up to the authorities. We are just going to recover now and look forward to Worcester.”

The RFU stated the match will be subject to a full review as per normal procedure.

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