'We got conned at the weekend' claims Scott Johnson
March 14, 2013
' If we got Craig Joubert again this week, I'd welcome him' © Getty Images
Scotland boss Scott Johnson has slammed Wales' approach to last weekend's match at Murrayfield, claiming match referee Craig Joubert was taken in by constant chat from the Welsh forwards and calling for consistency in the way games are officiated.
"We were frustrated that we got conned at the weekend," Johnson told The Scotsman. "We warned everyone that some teams do these things, but I don't want to be a coach who tells his players to start diving like soccer players. I want to tell them we're going to be competitive and, if we're not good enough, we're not good enough. I don't want to start chasing rainbows by telling them to cheat.
"The scrum becomes so important, the decisions so critical, that it creates anger that adds to other areas of the game, and that stops the game flowing. We're not at the stage of our development to be sitting here trying to con people. We're trying to do it right. That may be the moral high ground, but New Zealand are the same. They've just been together longer and they get a reputation, and it's amazing, when you get a reputation, how often the benefit of the doubt goes to you."
But Johnson said that he had some sympathy for the referee. "He didn't cost us the game. At no stage am I complaining about Craig. If we got him again this week, I'd welcome him.
"What we want is consistency. What is viewed as correct and what is viewed as incorrect? I can show you the stats for the referee this weekend [Welshman Nigel Owens]. They're completely opposite to the guy last weekend. Every time we get a referee, we do our due diligence on them and you would not believe how much they differ from one another. It is drastically different.
"I can spend my whole time getting the team prepared to play against X [referee], but I don't want to do that. Naive or not, this team is trying to grow, trying to get an ethic and if I change that, we're deluding ourselves."
Johnson has also refused to be drawn on his hopes about securing the Scotland job full-time. "This ride is not about me," he told PA Sport. "It's about Scotland. I've got a job to do and that is to prepare for a World Cup, whether I'm there or not. It's important for Scotland's development that I get that part right.
"I will review it with the appropriate people at the end of the campaign, like I said at day one. We will sit down and decide what is in the best interests of Scottish rugby."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
Martin Gillingham looks ahead to what he believes is the most remarkable ever climax to the league phase of the Top 14
With just two rounds left in the regular season, we look at the prospects of the teams taking part in the Championship play-offs
Joe Simpson talks to Charlie Morgan about loss, Wasps and being England's game-breaker
It is 100 years this week since the last international match played in Europe before the outbreak of World War One. Rewind remembers the fixture's longest-living survivor