Last night’s clash at Parc y Scarlets could easily be considered the match of the round as Scarlets secured a narrow, nail-biting 30-27 victory over French heavyweights, Toulon.
A try from either side in the opening four minutes of the game set the tone for what was an enthralling and captivating 80 minutes of rugby. With so much at stake for both sides and due to the nip and tuck nature of the game, tempers did boil over from time to time which just added to the overall sense of excitement to the occasion – it also got the home crowd quite riled up which generated an even better atmosphere.
Unfortunately one of those moments where tempers flared was one of the instances in rugby that officials want to stamp out immediately – players demanding cards for their opponents. Well Toulon’s Ma’a Nonu demanded a yellow card for a Scarlets player from Wayne Barnes and the English referee was quick to let the former All Black know exactly what he would do if Nonu persisted with his demands.
“Let’s make it really clear, you come ask for a yellow card, you’ll get one. Understand?”
It’s excellent officiating from Barnes who was completely right to lay down the law to Nonu because it is worrying to see this sort of thing creeping into the game.