Wednesday, 18 November 2015

Why does the guy who instigated the confrontation always get away scott free?

Hello Sir,
My query relates more to profesional rugby rather than grass roots rugby. I was hoping that you'd share your opinion on retalitation.
For example, I thoroughly enjoyed watching Northampton Vs Scarlets on the TV over the weekend and Saints scored a peach of a try that was disallowed because George North stamped on the scarlets player who refursed to let go of his leg. Now I don't have a problem with foul play being penalisied, but it only deals with half of the problem. Why does the guy who instigated the confrontation always get away scott free? At professional level it positively encourages players to go out and niggle the opposition. surely the Cheat ought to be punished too?
My own experience is that at grass roots level all 30 players are mostly out for a fun match and its almost niggle free. Obviously there is alot more riding on a European Cup match and players think that "winding up the hot head" will give them an edge... I don't think its fair that they get away with it though.
best wishes,
Hi Nathan

If a player retaliates, then the penalty will almost always be reversed. While the first act of foul play is wrong players must learn to leave it to the referee, and not take the law into their own hands.  If the retaliation were to be ignored, then players would always be looking to get a cheap shot in and the penalty as well

If it is just penalty kicks we are talking about, then the penalty will be reversed and you are right in essence, that the instigator will get away with it.  However be assured that he will be on the referees radar for the rest of the game and will be watched closely.

If the first act is deserving of a card, then reversing the penalty will not change that.  It is possible for the first act to be given a penalty kick and a card, then for the penalty to be reversed, but the card still stands.  In addition the retaliating player may also get a card.

On rare occasions where the retaliation does not fall under the foul play law, then it is possible for the penalty to 'not' be reversed, as the first act was more serious.  In this case the retaliation may be admonished only.

The Rugby Ref

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