Will asked this very interesting questions by emailing to "Ask The Ref" (see top right of this blog).
Will Brewer to asktheref
Hello Rugby Ref,
I've downloaded and read the IRB Laws, even passed their online exam.
However I still feel there are some "finer" points or definitions that are
missing (enjoyed your blog on the tackler/tackled "immediately" doing what
they are supposed to do-always thought there was more to that). Do you know
of any further, more detailed information sites?
Will brings up a very important point. Is there more to this game than the laws? The answer is a definite "yes".
The "Laws of the Game" of Rugby Union are a framework which The Rugby Ref uses to "manage" the game. It's a bit like learning to drive. You have read the highway code, you have practised the mechanics of driving the car off the public road and it all seems very straight forward. But the first time you drive onto a motorway or a main road, you realise there is a lot more to driving than just learning the rules of the road! Rugby Union is no different. In the UK when you attend an Entry Level Refereeing Award (ELRA) course one of the first things they tell you about is S.E.L.
These are the basic principles that The Rugby Ref uses. It should come as no surprise that Safety is top of the list, but it may surprise you that Law is at the bottom. The Rugby Ref is there to facilitate the players getting an enjoyable game of rugby; within the laws of the game. The Rugby Ref is there "for" the players. Never forget that.
Managing the game and what that means exactly is the topic of The Rugby Ref's next post, which will be published shortly. Watch out for it.
To answer Will's question on where to go for more detailed information, there are a few places The Rugby Ref would recommend:
- Visit the IRB Laws website This is an excellent resource which not only explains the laws of the game, but provides videos which show them in application. It also has fantastic sections on "Law Application Guidelines" and "Clarifications in Law".
- Contact your local Referees Society. They will be more than happy to give you information on referee's courses and if you join the society they will provide help, tuition and training.
- Finally The Rugby Ref highly recommends RugbyRefs.Com and their excellent forum, which is contributed to by Rugby Referees from around the world.
I hope that answers your question Will; and keep reading.