Wednesday, April 15th, 2009...10:03 am

Rucking, Ref’s should allow ‘collateral damage’

Jump to Comments

Source: Ref points finger at players over rucking – Richard Knowler


Lyndon Bray says the referees and lawmakers should not be copping flak for the lack of rucking in rugby.

The New Zealand Rugby Union’s manager of high performance referees says modern players no longer have the skills to free the ball with their feet.

“We just don’t see that anymore. It’s more to do with the evolution of the game and the techniques used than it is about referees (or laws) killing rucking.

“The reality is that we have lost the art of how to walk through and ruck. Secondly, what they (the players) are dead scared of is the judicial rather than the referee.

Law 16 of the International Rugby Board’s rulebook states players can still ruck but must not rake players on the ground and not intentionally step on them.On March 20, Hurricanes lock Jason Eaton rucked a Bulls player who was slowing the ball down and was subsequently yellow carded by Australian referee Matt Goddard.

COMMENTS: Did you read this stupidity, what sort of stupid thinking is that. Why, because if you are going to ruck there must be a margin of error in favour of the player doing the rucking, at the moment there is none.

Consider this: A defending player is laying on wrong side of a ruck, ball is under him or just in front of him. The current policing of this is by a referee ruling of either free kick or penalty, here we see the game stop, allowing the defending team to reset a defense, and the attacking team lose the advantage. What should happen is the attacking player should be able to ruck the ball and the player free for the next phase of attack. If this results in the player getting ‘raked’ or ‘stood on’ then that’s within the margin of error or ‘collateral damage’. A bit of slipper, that’s all!

Rucking margin of error should allow:
1) Player doing the rucking, must have one foot on the ground
2) The rucking player must be bound to another player within the ruck.
3) The player receiving the rucking, the body contact (by rucking players boot) must be with half a meter of the ball. So ball must be close to the rucking action. 
4) No rucking of heads or family jewels.

Rugby is doomed with this head in the sand analysis by Lyndon Bray, rucking does not exists anymore as the refs/laws don’t allow a wider margin of error. You cant avoid collateral damage with effective rucking. Get real rugby lawmakers !