Wednesday, 13 May 2015

Number 8 obstructing the opposing scrumhalf

Hi Ref
In a U19 match on the weekend I observed the number 8 unbinding with a single arm from the scrum once the ball was at his feet so as to obstruct the opposing scrumhalf and shield his own scrumhalf from being tackled. 
Law 20.3.g - indicates that if a flanker widens their stance to obstruct an opposing scrumhalf the appropriate sanction is a penalty kick.
Does this also apply to the number 8?
Thanks Ref,

Hi Drew

No, there is no such law to prevent the No 8 shielding the ball in this way.  He has to keep a full bind, but one arm is sufficient.  The bind must be continuous from armpit to wrist around the body of one of the 2nd row.

Remember also that the offside line for the defending scrum half is the ball and both feet must be behind it at all times

Thanks Drew
The Rugby Ref

Tuesday, 28 April 2015

Poor form?

Hi there, Just wondered if this is considered poor form from both Cheika and Peyper or if it’s a more normal occurrence than we realise at that level? Article here.
Hi Sean This is definitely not a normal occurrence and is against all the protocols. Coaches and team officials should not enter the referees room at half time, or for a 30 minutes "cooling down period" after the game. I am amazed this wasn't dealt with more robustly.

Kind Regards
The Rugby Ref

Question from Allan Hibbens

I notice recently that certain ball carriers go into contact/ The tackle shoulder first or forearm up and leading. Im not sure on the law on this one please advise.
Hi Allan If the ball carriers arm is across his body and he uses his forearm to push away the tackler as the tackle is made, then that is acceptable. If however he leads with the forearm, or swings it into the would be tackler, that is dangerous play and should be penalised. It's really one of those things where you have to see each instance and judge them individually.

The Rugby Ref

Wednesday, 18 March 2015

22 Restart or Scrum?

A question to "Ask The Ref"

 Team with the ball are 5m from their own try line. They pass the ball back into their own 'in goal' area, attempted kick is charged down by opposition and ball goes dead. 
What is the correct decision? 
Regards,  Damo
 Hi Damo

Assuming the kick didn't leave in-goal, the defending team took the ball into in-goal, and then the ball was made dead, so it is an attacking 5m scrum.

Unless, the kick left in-goal and the charge down was in the field of play and deflected the ball back into in-goal, in which case the charge downer is the one who took the ball into in-goal. That would be a 22 restart as the attacker put the ball into in-goal.

The key here is "who put the ball into in-goal" and not "who made it dead".

The Rugby Ref

Tuesday, 25 November 2014

Offside At The Ruck

John Tsang asks...."If I am defending at a ruck, can I move off the defensive line as soon as the scrum half have his hands on the ball?"

Or to put it another way........When is the ball out of the ruck?
The IRB have helpfully cleared this up for us once and for all.  The ball is out when it is lifted off the floor (or beyond the back foot of the ruck).  So to answer John's questions, NO! You cannot move in front of the offside line when the scrum half has his hands on the ball.  You must wait until he lifts the ball clear of the floor.

Offside at the ruck. When a scrum half attempts to retrieve the ball from a ruck, the ball is not out until that player has picked the ball up from the ground. In the clip the scrum half is taken out by the player before the ball is off the ground and this would be deemed to be offside by the player tackling the scrum half. If, however, the scrum half had picked up the ball and a defending player tackles the scrum half, that player does so without sanction.

See the video here: IRB Law Application Guidelines

The Rugby Ref

Tuesday, 22 July 2014

How far does the mantra, the referee is the sole judge of fact and law stretch?

Hello, how far does the mantra, the referee is the sole judge of fact and law stretch? 
What happens when Team A plays against Team B and the referee agrees that Team A won the game. Team B is not happy with this result and decides to lodge an appeal against the decision. Can a union or rugby body alter a result after it has been signed off by the referee appointed by such a union or rugby body?? Are they in their right to do so or does it always stands that The referee is the sole judge of fact (score in this case) and law.
 Hope to hear from you. Thank you Charlie 

 Hi Charlie

DURING THE MATCH 6.A.4 THE DUTIES OF THE REFEREE IN THE PLAYING ENCLOSURE (a) The referee is the sole judge of fact and of Law during a match. The referee must apply fairly all the Laws of the Game in every match.

If you believe the referee has made a mistake with adding up the scores, then by all means consult with him and the other coach immediately after the game.  It is entirely possible that he has marked all the scores correctly, but just added them up wrong in the heat of the moment.  This also happens to coaches!

However, if the referee believes the score to be correct, and the team are adamant that it is not, then all they can do is contact the league or cup committee.  Be warned though, that without any evidence, such as a full match video, it is unlikely the committee will contradict the refeee.

The Rugby Ref

Thursday, 12 September 2013

Was the Ref correct?

Hi Ref, At the weekend in an U16 Game in Swansea, the ref blew for a penalty infringement at a ruck on the half way line. The scrum half took a quick tap penalty from where the ref was standing. However, the ref stopped play and awarded a scrum feed to the other team due to the scrum half not taking the quick tap penalty from the correct mark. The ref said the mark was not where he was positioned but further in field. Was the ref correct, or should the penalty simply have been re-taken from the correct mark? Many thanks. Confused-ish
Hi there

By the letter of the law the referee was absolutely correct. 

21.2 Where penalty and free kicks are taken 
(a) The kicker must take the penalty or free kick at the mark or anywhere behind it on a line through the mark. If the place for a penalty or free kick is within 5 metres of the opponents’ goal line, the mark for the kick is 5 metres from the goal line, opposite the place of infringement. 
(b) When a penalty or free kick is awarded in in-goal, the mark for the kick is in the field of play, 5 metres from the goal line, in line with the place of infringement. 
Sanction: Any infringement by the kicker’s team results in a scrum 5 metres from the goal line in line with the mark. The opposing team throws in the ball. 

At lower levels the referee may decide to simply let the scrum half retake it from the correct spot, however the referee might equally have already spoken to the scrum half about this, or might have covered it in his pre-game brief? 

It's a judgement call sometimes, but the referee was correct. 

The Rugby Ref