Romford ‘robbed’ says coach Collins

PUBLISHED: 21:50 19 November 2010

Park edged out by leaders

Romford coach Mark Collins was fuming after seeing his side edged out by the leaders, writes Lee Power.

Collins felt Park were hard done by on more than one occasion as they came up just short.

But he is backing his men, who slipped to fifth, to haul themselves back into the title race.

He said: “I was absolutely livid at the end. I don’t usually have a pop at refs, but this bloke was nowhere near the standard needed and we were totally robbed.

“We’re not doing a lot wrong, which is the worst thing. But there were a couple of contentious decisions.”

Louis Stevens kicked Park into a 6-0 lead with a pair of penalties, only for Rochford to hit back with a try and penalty on the stroke of half-time to move 8-6 ahead.

“We did very well defensively for the first 15 minutes, but were a bit impatient in the red zone and allowed them to clear their lines,” said Collins.

“Their first try was a bit controversial as there had been a series of rucks and we thought there was a knock-on to us, but play carried on and they scored in the left corner.”

Park were penalised for not releasing the ball, allowing Rochford to turn round with a slender advantage, which they extended soon after the restart with a second try in the corner.

Paul Washbourne was sin-binned around the hour mark for pulling down a maul and Rochford scored a third try in the left corner after a series of pick-and-goes.

Park rallied, with Stevens kicking his third penalty, and Ricky Howard picked up from the base of a scrum to send Lithuanian centre Lu Sarkus under the posts for a try, which Stevens converted to cut the gap to two points.

“There were still 10 minutes to go and Rochford didn’t know how to deal with us,” added Collins.

“We knew they would come at us at 100mph and tire towards the end and it was going that way.

“We had a scrum in front of the posts and were penalised for pushing too early, when we had driven them off the ball.

“Then we were to the right of the posts, there were a series of pick-and-goes, but the ball flew back to their try line and we were penalised for a knock-on, when we thought there should’ve been a penalty to us.”

Park host Old Streetonians tomorrow (Saturday) and Collins has his sights on a convincing win.

“Streets are scoring a few points, but also conceding a few, so hopefully we can do a job and get a nice five-point bonus win,” he said.

“It would be nice to get a few points back and creep up the table again.

“I don’t think anyone is pulling up any trees and still say Rochford and us are the better sides in this league.

“We’ve lost two games by just two points this season and deserved to lose against Saffron Walden [a 29-18 defeat].

“But give the boys their due, we’ve played the full 80 minutes and kept going.”

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