Sunday, 20 September 2015

A couple of interesting questions on kicks at goal.

Q1..We often see long range penalty kicks, just clear or bounce off the bar. Are a defending team allowed to use their “line out skills” to lift a player in the same way they do when receiving kick offs, to possibly catch the ball which would otherwise have passed over the bar and accrue 3 points. Because these kicks are from distance they could stand legally with their hands by their sides until the kicker has struck the ball, but would then have adequate time to form up to lift and achieve adequate height to prevent a score. If there is no law one could almost imagine scrum halves being launched like circus acrobats to “save” goals 15ft from the ground.
Q2..Also once a kicker has nominated to “go for goal” from a penalty, who judges whether he makes a genuine attempt at goal. For example penalty given centre of pitch 30 metres out, defending side form up narrowly beneath posts expecting the kick to be converted or ball to go dead. Kicker completely hooks the ball out towards the wing which is picked up by an attacking player wide on the wing coming from an onside position to pick up the ball and score a try wide out. He may have made a genuine attempt at goal, he may be a very astute player who recognized the opposition had “gone to sleep” and “faked” the shot at goal. Is the try awarded and if not what law applies to negate it.

I look forward to your reply.
Thanks and best regards

Hi Patrick, really interesting questions.

Q1.  The answer to this question is in the law book, but not in the most obvious place.

Law 9.  Method of scoring
9.A.2 Kick at goal - special circumstances
(d) Any player who touches the ball in an attempt to prevent a penalty goal being scored is illegally touching the ball.Sanction: Penalty kick

Q2. Another interesting question. To answer the first part "who judges whether he makes a genuine attempt at goal?" Well the answer to that is simple, The Referee is the sole judge.

Law 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.

To answer the second part, "is the try awarded" we go back to law 9, Method of Scoring.

9.A.2 Kick at goal - special circumstances
(a) If after the ball is kicked, it touches the ground or any team-mate of the kicker, a goal cannot be scored.
So no.  The try isn't awarded.

Thanks for some great questions Patrick.
The Rugby Ref

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