Cardiff Plan To “Take Frustration Out On Edinburgh” Says Coach Matt Sherratt

Antrim , United Kingdom - 19 April 2024; Ethan McIlroy of Ulster evades the tackle of Mason Grady of Cardiff during the United Rugby Championship match between Ulster and Cardiff at the Kingspan Stadium in Belfast. (Photo By Ramsey Cardy/Sportsfile via Getty Images)

Cardiff Plan To “Take Frustration Out On Edinburgh” Says Coach Matt Sherratt

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By David Parsons

The build up for Cardiff’s final home game against Edinburgh began before they had left the pitch at Kingspan Stadium last weekend after a sickening defeat to Ulster.

Head coach Matt Sherratt wanted his players to transfer the feeling of bitter disappointment at the end of their 19-17 defeat into the Arms Park clash with the Scottish capital side in a bid to capture that elusive first win of the year.

The demand was a response to a succession of agonisingly close defeats in Glasgow, Limerick and Belfast.

Since then, Sherratt has raised a number of refereeing issues with the BKT United Rugby Championship head of match officials, Tappe Henning.

“This is nothing out of the ordinary,” said Sherratt.

“After every game you have until Tuesday to query any decisions. I don’t do that very often because it doesn’t change the result.

“It can help on clarification on some points of law. You ask, ‘This has happened and we’re not sure, so what do you think?’

“Tappe Henning is very good, and we have gone through the same process as usual. There were some pretty big decisions that changed the game and we’ve asked for clarification on a couple of those.

“We’re awaiting for responses back on that, but ultimately it doesn’t change anything. There was nothing in any of the decisions that favoured any particular team, it was just the manner of them.

“The potential knock on at the line-out led to seven points for them, the Thomas Young incident was potentially seven points lost and then there was a seven to 10 point swing at the end.

“There were emotional and game changing decisions, big decisions in terms of the context of the game and the result. We were disappointed afterwards that we didn’t fall on the right side of any of them.

“I thought Mike Adamson had a great view of the last incident and he shouted ‘knock on Ulster’ and he played on and we scored. The question I had is because there is so much mixed opinion on it, if you have to look at something 10 times then it doesn’t seem to be clear and obvious.

“That’s the frustration I have. To overrule a referee with a perfect line of sight, not just in our game but in any game, means it has to be very, very clear.

“As soon as we stepped off the pitch after the game, genuinely the first words were let’s make sure we take it out on Edinburgh next week. We tried to flip the mindset quite quickly and we’ve just got to dust ourselves down and get on with it.”

Edinburgh will arrive in the Welsh capital on the back of scoring four unanswered tries in the final quarter of their 43-18 comeback win over Scarlets last weekend to keep themselves in the hunt for a top eight finish.

As for Cardiff, home fans will get the last chance to see Ellis Jenkins play at the Arms Park before he hangs up his boots. It will also be Rhys Carre’s last home game before he rejoins Saracens next season.

“Edinburgh are a very, very solid team who possess very good physical attributes. They have some real threats in their side like Hamish Watson, Duhan van der Merwe, Jamie Ritchie and Bill Mata,” added Sherratt.

“There won’t be any drop off in effort or performance from us and we need to ensure we get them to play the type of game we want to play, rather than allow them to dictate how they want to play.”

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