The scrum contests in this year's Currie Cup are a mess, Sharks coach John Plumtree said on Saturday after his team's 28-19 loss to the Lions in Johannesburg.
"Scrums in this competition at the moment are a shambles," said Plumtree.
"We had them (the Lions) under pressure, but ultimately the scrum cost us at the end," he claimed.
The Sharks coach was referring to a scrum that took place with a little more than six minutes left in the match. At that stage his team was training 25-19 and were enjoying most of the possession.
When the set-piece collapsed, the Lions were awarded a penalty that effectively ended the coastal side's chances of getting back into the match.
"The tighthead had a short bind on the loosehead and that force the scrum down, and bang points gone so I was disappointed with that decision," Plumtree said.
"With the number of resets, that are ultimately not the ref's fault, the players are going to have to understand that with up to 10 or 12 resets per game it is going to cost you 10 or 12 minutes and no one wants to see a whole lot of reset scrums."
The Sharks mentor said that action needs to be taken by South African Rugby's chief of referees Andre Watson.
"There are some props in this competition that are clearly inadequate and are serial offenders. Ultimately the referees are trying to look after them and it is really up to Andre Watson to sort out those offenders," added Plumtree.
During the contest the Sharks enjoyed the upper hand at the scrums with their first six points a direct result of mistakes the Lions were making.
"I don't think it is a plus to have a dominant scrum because you never get rewarded."
Lions coach John Mitchell had little to complain about after his teams victory over the defending champions and only called for greater consistency from match officials but he admitted that his men were at fault at times.
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