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RUGBY: Coach Plummer defends Weymouth no-go with leaders
WEYMOUTH head coach Chris Plummer has revealed that a selection crisis was the reason behind his club’s decision to cancel their league game against Wells on Saturday.
The Dorset side has been deducted points for scratching the fixture and now sit bottom of the Southern Counties South table, but Plummer believes the club made the right choice with his players’ safety coming first.
Plummer told Echosport that he did have three players available to fill the positions at prop and hooker, however, he didn’t feel they were ready to face the league leaders.
And, given the fact Weymouth had no front row cover on the bench, cancelling the match was an unfortunate yet necessary move.
“We had a bit of a crisis in midweek,” he said. “Because of injuries sustained to front row players in the last game, and those in the seconds not ready to step up to Southern Counties standard, we couldn’t field a side.
“I had three players who could have played but one hasn’t managed a full game this season, one hasn’t played at all and the other has lost a lot of weight and hasn’t propped for some time.
“Calling a game off doesn’t look good on the club but we felt it was the right decision to make as we have to think of the players and their safety. We were still agonising over it on the Thurs- day and with some players in other positions pulling out we felt that playing would only have exacerbated the problem.”
And the Weymouth chief feels the lack of front row options is indicative of a less than ideal summer at the club.
He added: “We didn’t have applications for the job of first-team coach after Paul Harding left so when I moved up from the second team it was late in the day to start recruiting new players.
“We didn’t have any pre-season games so we’ve made a slow start and that hasn’t helped either.
“You can look to your second team but when they are playing a couple of divisions below you and there are a lot of youngsters involved you can’t expect them to make the step up.”
Plummer is hopeful the situation will be remedied in time for this Saturday’s clash at North Dorset.
“Once you start cancelling games you are at the top of a very slippery slope,” he said. “We’ll have some players back from injury this week so hopefully we will be able to get a team out.”
Weymouth had similar unavailability issues towards the end of last season and their league form suffered as a result.
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