HEREFORDSHIRE League chiefs must clamp down on the rough treatment being dished out not only to his table-topping side but to officials too, says Ludlow Town Colts boss Scott Mackenzie.

Mackenzie spoke out after last Saturday’s 1-1 draw at Hereford City after claiming both the neutral referee and Ludlow’s linesman Mark Tonkinson were subjected to abuse.

And after seeing his side maintain their unbeaten record this season, Mackenzie said it is not the first time he believes his team has been singled out by the opposition.

He said: “We are a Shropshire team top of the Herefordshire League so everyone wants to beat us and we accept that.

“But I’m becoming disappointed by the attitude of some of the teams we play – everyone wants to beat the unbeaten team but you have to stick to the rules of the game.

“There’s a lack of referees and it’s easy to see the reason why with the abuse they get. No one wants to run the line for us because they know the stick that they’ll get. It shouldn’t be happening.”

Mackenzie admitted his side were lucky to go in level at the break at Hereford as the hosts twice hit the woodwork after taking a 15th-minute lead.

But Ludlow levelled five minutes before the break – Nathan Priday heading home a Simon Bradley free-kick – before bossing the second half, only to have to settle for a point.

With title rivals Hinton and Shobdon drawing 2-2 in their game, it was not the worst result, Mackenzie admitted.

He added: “We’d had a couple of weeks without a game and we looked very leggy and jaded. Fair play to Hereford, they gave us a hell of a battle.

“But to come away with a draw, still unbeaten, having played badly, and then seeing Hinton and Shobdon had drawn, we’ll take that.”

Despite that, Ludlow’s cushion over second-placed Shobdon has been cut to six points through no fault of their own.

Belmont Wanderers’ withdrawal from the league has cost Ludlow six points but Shobdon only three as they had only beaten them once.

Ludlow, with two games in hand, are still in the driving seat but have to play Shobdon twice and Mackenzie admitted: “They will think that if they can beat us twice they will have a chance.”