June International Tours

Counties continue Law experiments

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England’s County Championship starts and becomes the latest Law laboratory, as the International Rugby Board’s Experimental Law Variations are again tested.

The initial work was done at Stellenbosch University. After that the experiments moved to Scotland with the Scottish Super Cup and now is continuing in the Shute Shield in New South Wales.

The County Championship becomes the fourth testing ground when it gets going this weekend.

Any eventual changes – and they seem radical – will come into effect after the 2007 World Cup when the IRB will announce whatever changes are to take place.

The following are the experiments for the County Championship:

Inside the 22


When a defending player receives the ball outside the 22 metre line and passes, puts or takes the ball back inside the 22, the following can occur.

– If the ball is then kicked directly into touch, the line-out is in line with where the ball was kicked.

– If a tackle, ruck or maul is subsequently formed and the ball is then kicked directly into touch, the line-out is where the ball crossed the touch-line.

Breakdown 1

Players entering the breakdown area must do so through the gate. TO BE RIGIDLY APPLIED

Immediately the tackle occurs there are off-side lines.

The off-side lines run parallel to the goal lines through the hindmost part of the hindmost player at the tackle.

A tackled player must immediately play the ball and may not be prevented from playing the ball by any player who is off his feet.

Any other player playing the ball at the breakdown must be on his feet. OFF FEET OUT OF PLAY

If the ball is unplayable at the breakdown, the side that did not take the ball into contact will receive a Free Kick.

Breakdown 2

If the ball is received directly from a kick and a tackle occurs immediately, and the ball becomes unplayable, the Free Kick is given to the team who received the kick.

There are only three penalty offences (not including dangerous play) at the breakdown.

– off-side for not coming through the gate.

– off-side where defenders are in front of the last man on their side of the breakdown. i.e. the off-side line

– A tackled player must immediately play the ball and may not be prevented from playing the ball by any player who is off their feet

Breakdown 3

Repeated infringements can be dealt with as per current law.

All Free Kicks are tap kicks including a mark and a scrum option is available for all Free Kicks.

Dangerous play not tolerated. E.g. Diving over the breakdown.

The halfback should not be touched unless he has his hands on the ball.

Maul

Defending players can pull down the maul.

Players joining the maul must do so through the gate. TO BE RIGIDLY APPLIED

If a maul becomes unplayable, the team not in possession at the start of the maul receives a Free Kick.

The ”truck and trailer” not an offence.

Scrum

The off-side line will be 5 metres back from the hindmost foot of the scrum.

 

365 Digital

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