RICHARD Cockerill, the Edinburgh head coach, has stirred things up by complaining that his side were unfairly officiated by John Lacey, the Irish referee in charge of their defeat by the Scarlets at the weekend, and has no intention of letting the matter rest.

"I’ll be speaking to Greg Garner [PRO14 elite referees manager]. I don’t want any favours: I just want to be refereed the same," he said as he reflected on the game two days later. "I was warned by the players that happens a lot with Edinburgh, and now I’m learning that first-hand. I don’t know why it is."

Cockerill is perfectly happy to accept two important points. One: overall, the Scarlets were the better team and would have won regardless of the officiating. Two: the red card shown to Michel Rizzo, the on-loan prop, early in the second half was totally correct in law.

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He is, however, disputing two specific decisions where Edinburgh asked Lacey to check with the television match official [TMO] but he refused. The first involved a block on WP Nel that created the space for the Scarlets to score their second try; the other a possible forward pass in the build up to the fourth.

"Why wouldn’t you go to the TMO in that situation around that potential crossing? If our captain, Magnus [Bradbury], goes and asks the referee to have a look at it, he’s just dismissive of it, then it turns out we’re correct – that’s a little bit disrespectful to our captain at the very least,” Cockerill said.

"I expect a game that’s live on TV, refereed by an international referee with the facility to go to the TMO, that you check that. It’s crossing: it’s a penalty to us. Then at half-time that would have made it 8-7 and maybe it’s a different game."

Apart from those specific complaints, Cockerill reckoned that Edinburgh got the rough edge of a number of more evenly balanced decisions. "I just want us to be refereed the same as the other team," he said. "Just because he’s an international referee and they’re supposed to win, I want Edinburgh to be refereed the same as their opponents and not a pre-emptive decision – ‘Well, Scarlets should be dominant so that’s how I’ll referee it' – which is what I felt at the weekend.

"We had to fight a lot harder than they did at the breakdown to get any benefit from competing for the ball. Things like the crossing scenario: our the captain gets pushed away, but he’s happy to discuss the TMO referral with their players around Micky Rizzo [the red card].

"The upshot of Micky Rizzo is correct: it is what it is, the law is the law. But the relationship with our players and with the opposition players was very different with Johnny Lacey, which I don’t expect to be the case. Our players weren’t allowed to speak to him around TMO referrals, but their players were.”