Tuesday, 25 July 2017

Law changes for the coming season

Following their trial in the Southern Hemisphere from January, the following law changes will be introduced to English Rugby for the coming season (from August 1st).


Law 3, number of players: If a game goes to uncontested scrums there must be eight players from each side in the scrum.  This is to discourage teams from deliberately offending to go uncontested.

Law 5, time: If a Penalty Kick is kicked into touch after time has elapsed without touching another player, the line out is allowed.  This is to discourage teams from offending in the dying moments of the game.

Law 8, advantage: When multiple penalty infringements are made by the same team the referee may allow the captain of the non-offending team to choose the most advantageous penalty mark.  This is to discourage repeat offending when advantage is already being played.

Law 9, scoring: A penalty try is now worth 7 points, no conversion need be taken.  This is to discourage teams from preventing a probable try and also to save time on the clock.

Law 19, touch: A player who is juggling the ball is deemed to be in possession. This brings into law something which is already applied in practise; it means a player need not be in contact with the ball at the exact moment of touching the touchline or the ground beyond it to be deemed in touch.

Law 19, touch: The ball is not in touch if a player jumps from the playing area and returns the ball to the field of play before the player lands in touch.  This is to simplify law and to increase ball-in-play time.

Law 19, touch: The ball is not in touch if the ball-carrier reaches the plane of touch but returns the ball to the playing area before landing in touch.  This is to simplify law and to increase ball-in-play time.

Law 19, touch: A player in touch who catches or picks up a ball that has not reached the touchline has taken the ball out of play. This is to simplify law and to increase ball-in-play time.

Law 19, touch: A defending player in the 22 meter area who catches or picks up a ball that has not reached the 22 meter-line has carried the ball into the 22 meter area. It does not apply to make a successful mark.  This is to simplify law and to increase ball-in-play time.

Law 22, in-goal: A defending player in the in-goal who catches or picks up a ball that has not reached the goal-line has carried the ball into the in-goal.  This is to simplify law and to increase ball-in-play time.

Law 22, in-goal: A player in touch in-goal or in the dead-ball area who catches or picks up a ball that has not reached the touch in-goal line or the dead-ball line has taken the ball out of play.  This is to simplify law and to increase ball-in-play time.

Throwing the ball into the scrum
Law 20.5 & 20.5 (d) 5
No signal from referee. The scrum-half must throw the ball in straight, but is allowed to align their shoulder on the middle line of the scrum, therefore allowing them to stand a shoulder width towards their own side of the middle line.
Rationale: To promote scrum stability, a fair contest for possession while also giving the advantage to the team throwing in.

Handling in the scrum – exception
Law 20.9 (b)
The number eight shall be allowed to pick the ball from the feet of the second-rows.
Rationale: To promote continuity.

Striking after the throw-in
Law 20
Once the ball touches the ground in the tunnel, any front-row player may use either foot to try to win possession of the ball. One player from the team who put the ball in must strike for the ball.
Rationale: To promote a fair contest for possession.
Sanction: Free-kick

Law 15.4 (c)
The tackler must get up before playing the ball and then can only play from their own side of the tackle “gate”.
Rationale: To make the tackle/ruck simpler for players and referees and more consistent with the rest of that law.

Ruck
Law 16
A ruck commences when at least one player is on their feet and over the ball which is on the ground (tackled player, tackler). At this point the offside lines are created. Players on their feet may use their hands to pick up the ball as long as this is immediate. As soon as an opposition player arrives, no hands can be used.
Rationale: To make the ruck simpler for players and referees.

Other ruck offences
Law 16.4
A player must not kick the ball out of a ruck. The player can only hook it in a backwards motion.
Rationale: To promote player welfare and to make it consistent with scrum law.
Sanction: Penalty

3 comments:

  1. There are some tricky questions:
    Law 5: If a team is awarded a penalty after the time is expired, then the ball is kick into touch indirectly (bounces on the filed then into touch, nobody touches it). Is the ball deemed to be dead then game is up or I should let the touch continue?

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    Replies
    1. You should let the line out continue.

      From a penalty the ball does not have to go out on the full, it can bounce in the field of play and then go into touch. The key is that it goes into touch without being touched by another player.

      "LAW AMENDMENT TRIAL
      If a penalty is kicked into touch after time has elapsed without touching another player , the throw-in is taken and play continues until the next time the ball becomes dead."

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